Rights committee says talks delay regrettable

| 01/12/2008

(CNS): In the wake of the government’s announcement last Thursday that the constitutional talks with the UK had been postponed, the Human Rights Committee has said it is concerned that the change may jeopardize the timetable for reform. The talks have been postponed owing to a concern by government that the opposition may not have shown up because a key member of the team is still dealing with post hurricane recovery on Cayman Brac.

The HRC released a statement on Friday 28 November the day after the Leader of Government Business Kurt Tibbetts had said he had called Sir Ian Hendry the Leader of the UK negotiating team to ask for a new date for the talks following public comments made by Rolstin Anglin and Juliana O’Connor-Connolly of the opposition United Democratic Party indicating that the talks should be postponed because of the situation on the Sister Islands in the wake of Hurricane Paloma.  

The committee said while it wished the Sister Islands a speedy recovery it wanted to see he talks rescheduled as soon as possible. Tibbetts said on Thursday at the post cabinet televised press briefing that he felt the talks had to be postponed as all parties needed to be involved but that the delay was problematic.  “Government is gravely concerned that this postponement has implications for our ability to complete the process on time, given the reality that the Legislative Assembly will be dissolved in March of next year,” Tibbetts had stated.

The HRC said it agreed and hoped that talks will be back on track as soon as possible long before the dissolution of the LA. “The HRC shares the concern that this postponement may jeopardize the timetable for significant progress for constitutional reform,” the committee said in its statement. “As the organisation vested with the promotion and protection of human rights in the Cayman Islands, the HRC remains on hand and committed to participate in the process of constitutional reform. The HRC trusts that as soon as scheduling permits the talks will be rescheduled — hopefully early in the New Year.”

Anglin denied that the UDP had threatened or suggested they would not turn up for talks but said given the circumstances in Cayman Brac and Little Cayman the opposition felt that government should have already decided to postpone talks.

The government has persistently accused the UDP of using delaying tactics throughout the constitutional reform process and the UDP seemed to gain ground when July referendum on the government’s constitutional proposals was cancelled. Government said in the end it would hold the referendum at the same of General Election in May based on the proposals coming out of the negotiations rather than going in. The government has insisted however, that it will complete negotiations before the election.

“The importance of a new, relevant constitution can not be overstated, particularly given recent events involving the Judiciary and the Police and we believe this process must be pressed ahead to a satisfactory conclusion.  The country deserves no less.  Unfortunately, the situation now is that we are really running against the clock,” Tibbetts said.

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  1. Charissa Van Roekel says:

    Speeding Up Talks

    Here I’ll jhelp speed it up for ya:

    (1) Go to the Brac and rebuild their homes, HRC, there are some still homeless, yes? Aren’t you supposed to be concerned for their livelihood and "human rights"? Why aren’t you over there making sure they have homes to live in then?

    (2) Remove all references of bizzare ideology and ungodliness of nondiscrimination of sexual orientation and all this garbage of same-sex union crap. 

    That way, you’ll have comfortably-sheltered Islanders who have time to think about politics once more. You’ll have godly and upright citizenry who’ll cause the Islands to flourish.

    HRC, keep twisting and perverting truth and you will have worse calamity in these beloved Islands than Hurricane Paloma.  The degredation that you bring to my grandchildren’s generation will be Hell on earth itself.  



  2. Rodney says:

    The only talks this Government and future Governments should have about our Constitution is that we declare Independence and very soon…….I hate this British Rule – time to change the tea we drink……..conquer and divide….