Bridger a liability says LoGB

| 30/01/2009

(CNS):Following its refusal to grant any more funds for the Special Police Investigation Team, forcing the governorto use his reserve powers, the elected government has said that while Martin Bridger remains in charge of the investigation they cannot support its continuation. “For several months, using the best command of the Queen’s English, we have explained to the governor that the lead investigator will compromise the whole affair,” Leader of Government Business Kurt Tibbetts said.

Explaining that government was happy to sanction any necessary investigations into genuine wrongdoing within the police service or anywhere else, Minister Alden McLaughlin said the investigations had not revealed anything of substance, and in the most recent update to Legislative Assembly members, Acting Commissioner James Smith had nothing new to tell them.

“There was nothing, zero, nada, zilch!” he said, adding that Smith’s main purpose seemed to be to reassure the government that he was overseeing the investigations and that Bridger was an experienced and capable officer.

As the country waits on the update from the governor regarding the first part of the investigation which surrounded an alleged break into the Cayman Net News offices by two staff members, the government is concerned that whatever else SPIT may want to look at, if indeed there is anything, will be hampered by Bridger remaining at the helm.

“After the Henderson fiasco and Justice Cresswell’s ruling, we feel very strongly that the lead investigator, regardless of his commitments and experience, the net end result should he continue with these investigations as lead, he will compromise whole affair,” Tibbetts said, adding that there has been no indication from the governor or the acting commissioner that Bridger is leaving.

“We can’t agree to fund anything with that situation and we had to draw the line somewhere,” the LoGB explained. He said the situation where the investigators were not revealing what they are doing cannot go on indefinitely when so much money has been spent and there have been no results.

Again, ministers estimated that around $4 million dollars has been spent on the actual investigation, not including any of the damages that will be paid to Henderson.

“What has been produced thus far is nothing, and we are talking about millions of dollars and in these times that means more,” Tibbetts said.”Regardless of due process, judgements must be sound and people tasked to make decisions need to think those decisions through.”

McLaughlin said that it once again illustrated the critical need for changes in constitution that would prevent one person alone for making these kind of far reaching decisions.

Although SPIT was expected to have turned its attention to other issues within the RCIPS based on some alleged reports of wrongdoing, the ministers said that they were expecting to be told by 31 January whether there was anything that was of substance and that would be investigated, but there was no indication that the investigation would take on another life.

Speaking on Rooster’s Crosstalk radio show this morning (Friday, 30 January), the acting commissioner said he would not have a report ready for the governor and Cabinet about what is happening with the investigaiton until the second week of February.

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Comments (5)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    By all accounts the case (if there ever was one?) againat Lyndon Martin has just collapsed. I hear rumours that the hearing in chambers listed for last Friday was cancelled after the prosecution asked for more time to prepare their case.

    • Anonymous says:

      Kurt and Bridger are a liability!

      The main difference between the two (other than size) is that we have an actual figure on the damage Bridger has done so far. As for Kurt we haven’t seen CI$1.5 Billion Dollars in accounts for the Government yet, so we’ll have to keep our fingers crossed.

      • Anonymous says:

        I realize that it makes for good political spin in an election year but the CI$1.5 billion dollars does not really have very much to do with Mr. Tibbetts.

        The issue was announced like this:

        "The Governor today (August 5, 2008) issued a brief statement regarding the unaudited government accounts that date back as far as 2003. They involve every statutory authority, every government-owned business, and every Cabinet ministry and portfolio, and total at least $1.5 billion in inadequately accounted-for expenditures".

        First, note that the issue goes back to 2003 when Mr. Bush was LoGB

        Second, it is public service matter which is not within the elected Ministers’ responsibilty. You need to talk to the Financial Secy and the Governor about this.

         

  2. Anonymous says:

    What is so perverse about the current situation is that the same officers operating in the UK would now have been placed on suspension (not just ‘gardening leave’ as Kernohan et el received) pending an internal investiagtion into the Cresswell ruling.

    Yet on Cayman they are all carrying on like nothing has happened.

  3. Anonymous says:

    While I might have many disagreements with the PPM, on this one though, I must agree 100% with Kurt Tibbets and Alden McLaughlin that Martin Bridger is not only a liability, but absolute piece of worthless trash out of the U.K.

    In many other Caribban countries, Bridger and his croonies would have long been booted back for absolute incompetence or better yet, not even allowed to enter in the first place !!!!!

    I also hope that there is strong protest from the next Government to the FCO, not to renew Stuart Jack contract when it expires, which I believe is this year.