Archive for February 18th, 2009

Only 12 FOIs granted in full

| 18/02/2009 | 1 Comment

(CNS): In the first month after its enactment, 117 requests were made under the new Freedom of Information Law but just 12 of them have actually been granted in full so far. On 31 January, 81 requests were still outstanding, while eight had been thwarted as records don’t exist, five had been exempted, one refused, three had been withdrawn, two were granted in part, one had been deferred because the information will soon be made public, and four were found to be in the public domain already.

In an official report documenting the first month’s mixed bag of operation, the Cayman Islands FOI Unit released statistics outlining the requests and action made to 88 government departments, authorities and agencies. Of the 117 requests made between 5 and 31 January, the greatest number (17) were received by the Immigration Department, most of which regarded the applicant’s own immigration files. The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service received 11 requests, and the Legal Department received 8.

Cayman Airways was the only agency to use section 9 (c) under the FOI law, which states that a government entity can refuse a request because of the diversion of too many resources to fulfil it.

Requests included: the Cabinet Office was asked for a list of all persons granted Caymanian Status by Cabinet in 2003 and supporting documentation giving the reasons for the grant; the Immigration Department received a request regarding the scoring system used to evaluate permanent residence applications; the Tourism, Environment, Investment & Commerce Ministry received a request relating to the importation documents of dolphins; the Tourism Ministry was also asked for the documentation relating to the MOU on the port development.

The report summarises the total number of FOI requests received by publicauthorities and gives examples of the types of requests of general interest which were made during the month. The publication indicates that there were no internal reviews or appeals made during this period. Each public authority also maintains a disclosure log on-line in which requests of general public interest (and the decisions made on these requests) are recorded.

“I am happy that the public is taking advantage of this new right,” said FOI Coordinator Carole Excell.

The report includes general FOI applications of interest, including requests for information on the operation of schools in the Cayman Islands, information on the new port development and immigration matters. The report details the number of requests made to each public authority, as well as the outcomes of those requests.    

For more information about FOI in the Cayman Islands  or to view the report visit the website at, or collect a user guide from the office in Elizabethan Square, George Town.


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Women’s of Valor All Star: talent and skill on display

| 18/02/2009 | 0 Comments

(CNS): The National Women’s Basketball League’s Women’s of Valor All Star game takes place this Sunday at the court off Eastern Avenue. The game will be preceded by a three-point shoot-out, which will start at 6:00 p.m. The Women of Valor All Star game tips off at 7:00 p.m. “All Star games are meant to be action-packed and fun. They are the types of games in which players show their mettle and the fans get to see just what they are capable of,” said Redver Ebanks, coach of the Cayman Islands National Women’s Basketball team. (Left: Quick Cash Storm’s Bobeth O’Garro scores)

In a release from the Cayman Islands Basketball Association, Collin Anglin who coaches Dominoes Lady Heels said that all star games are important for the players too. “The all star game showcases the top athletes in the league; It is a reward of recognition for their individual performances during the regular season and is a chance to showcase their skills on a special night and entertain the crowd.”

According to the CIBA, a look at the two competing teams shows an almost even split of talent. For instance, the Red team has Lashawn Davis, Dionne Anglin, Sarrah Kidd and Theresa Hamil, all top players who have played for the national team. On the Blue team, there is a nice blend of top players such Merta Day, Bobeth O’Garro, Lavern Davis, Benieca Thompson and Scimone Campbell. Most of these women play on different teams in the basketball league, so it will be interesting to see if they can play in synch, or if it will be a case of style versus ego. (Right: DominoesLady Heels Dionne O’Garro-Anglin shoots the ball)

On paper at least, the Blue squad appears stronger. But it will come down to heart, character and a little bit of luck. So basketball fans, don’t miss this game, when the best of the best go all out for a chance to win it all.

All Star Red Team
Lashawn Davis
Mesha Gordon
Sarrah Kidd
Felicia Connor
Lauri Webster
Anna Sangiacomo
Adelaide Francois
Christsania McLean
Theresa Hamil
Dionne Anglin

All Star Blue Team
Christina McLean
Scimone Campbell
Bobeth O’Garro
Nilani Perera
Cassianne Lawrence
Sofia Foster
Benieca Thompson
Lavern Ebanks
Sheneka Moore
Merta Day


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Church break-in still not solved

| 18/02/2009 | 1 Comment

(CNS): Police are still looking for thieves who broke into the Seventh-day Adventist church on Smith Road overnight Sunday-Monday, 8-9 February. Though investigating officers have followed a number of leads, the RCIPS has issued a release appealing for information. The church lost a considerable amount of items in the burglary, including two desktop computers, a 42-inch flat screen television, a mixing board, a video camera and a DVD player.

“We’ve followed up a number of leads and carried out a few search warrants but we could use any additional information about the burglary or the location of the stolen goods,” said Detective Sergeant Lauriston Burton, the investigating officer.

Detectives would like to hear from anyone who was in the Smith Road area overnight on the night of the break-in who may have seen something suspicious, anyone who has knowledge about who committed the crime or anyone who might know where the stolen property is.

Anyone with information should contact Detective Sergeant Lauriston Burton on 949-4222 or Crime Stoppers on 800-8477 (TIPS). All persons calling Crime Stoppers remain anonymous, and are eligible for a reward of up to $1000, should their information lead to an arrest or recovery of property/drugs.

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Open Arms Family Fun Day

| 18/02/2009 | 0 Comments

(CNS): Rotaract Blue, a non-profit community service club, will be hosting their first annual Open Arms Family Fun Day this Saturday, 21 February, at the Airport Park from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm. The fair is in conjunction with the Rotaract Blue’s Open Arms Programme which aims to create community awareness of different disabilities and to integrate individuals with disabilities into the community. The event will provide an opportunity for those with special needs to have fun with family and friends.

In a release from the club, Rotaract Blue invites the community to join us in an afternoon full of games, food, laughter and much more! Please come out and help support our efforts of accepting and embracing persons living with special needs as well as acknowledging those individuals who have made it their life’s focus to assist those with special needs.

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WBC clips Killa’s wings

| 18/02/2009 | 0 Comments

( The World Boxing Council has refused to sanction a fight between junior middleweight champion Vernon Forrest and contender Charles Whittaker. Forrest’s promoter Gary Shaw had made a request to get permission from the WBC to stage Forrest-Whittaker on April 25 in the Cayman Islands. The fight would have been televised by Showtime. Whittaker’s family is from the Cayman Islands and there was some money to be made for people in the Caymans to see one of their own fighting for a major title. Go to article

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Multiple Mayhem returns to Motions

| 18/02/2009 | 0 Comments

(CNS): The Cayman Multiples Support Group will be holding a family fun hour at Motions Unlimited Gym on Sparky Drive for parents of twins, triplets and higher multiples and their children this Sunday, 22 February from 3:30pm to 4:30pm.Tim Dailey, the organizer of this week’s event, says the regular group gatherings have been a great success and the selection of Motions as the venue for the event again is a sign of the quality of the facility for hosting family friendly activities.

“At a our last meeting we had nearly 20 children ranging in age from only a few weeks old to about 6 years old running around participating in all the gymnastic activities,” he said, praising the facilities at the gym calling them “extremely high” for a community the size of Cayman, and offering a fun way to introduce the children to active, healthy fun. “When they all get together, it truly is multiple mayhem, but the kids all have a wonderful time, and the parents get a chance to chat with other parents and discuss the unique challenges faced with raising multiple children.”

The Cayman Multiples Support Group was formed about three years ago to offer support to parents and expectant parents of multiples by providing casual gatherings for the parents and kids to chat in an informal environment with fellow parents.

“We don’t hold formal meetings, our gatherings are really a chance for the kids to blow off some steam while the parents share tips, ideas and other advice,” he says.

Two expectant couples of twins have been attending recently, according to Mr. Dailey, and he says both have indicated the additional support to have been of great assistance.

“One couple actually had their twin girls this last week, and we are looking forward to them being able to attend as a family in the months and years ahead.”

Motions Unlimited has been very supportive of the group having been originally chosen for the wide variety of activities offered to the kids and the large open space provided for them, says Mr. Dailey, adding, “there are activities for all age groups and the staff arrange a casual program to encourage the kids to keep moving and active.”

“It has been great working with Motions,” he says, “and look forward to holding future meetings at the gym in the coming months.

Mr. Dailey says there are about 25 known sets of twins and one set of triplets on the island who have expressed interest in participating in the groups activities.

“We welcome new parents and expectant parents to get in touch and join in,” he says, adding that members help each other cope with some of the unique challenges presented by having multiples.

For more information, contact Tim Dailey at 916-8005 or via e-mail at or

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Training for cosmetology industry

| 18/02/2009 | 0 Comments

(CNS): Hairdressers, barbers, tattoo and body piercing technicians, and other cosmetologists are urged to attend cosmetology training workshops being offered by the Department of Environmental Health (DEH). The first workshop will be held for 9am to 12 noon on Tuesday, 31 March, at the Cayman Islands Environmental Centre (DEH’s location), 580 North Sound Road. The $15 registration fee includes literature.

Other workshops will be held on 28 April, 26 May, 30 June, 28 July. DEH staff has structured the workshop to educate operators on safe hygiene practices within the industry. Participants will focus on equipment sterilisation and disinfection; preventing the transmission of communicable diseases; and updating participants about updates to DEH guidelines for operating cosmetology-related establishments.

Business owners are encouraged to act now and register their employees for these important workshops. For more information call DEH at 949-6696.

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An apple a day keeps breast cancer away?

| 18/02/2009 | 0 Comments

(ScienceDaily): Six studies published in the past year by a Cornell researcher add to growing evidence that an apple a day — as well as daily helpings of other fruits and vegetables — can help keep the breast-cancer doctor away. In one of his recent papers, published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry (57:1), Rui Hai Liu, Cornell associate professor of food science and a member of Cornell’s Institute for Comparative and Environmental Toxicology, reports that fresh apple extracts significantly inhibited the size of mammary tumors in rats — and the more extracts they were given, the greater the inhibition. Go to article

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Facebook backs down

| 18/02/2009 | 0 Comments

(CNN): Under fire from tens of thousands of users, the social networking site Facebook said early Wednesday it is reverting to its old policy on user information — for now. The site posted a brief message on users’ home pages that said it was returning to its previous "Terms of Use" policy "while we resolve the issues that people have raised." The "Terms of Use" is the legalese tacked on to the bottom of most Web sites that details what the site’s owners can do with the information that users provide. Go to article

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Beheading may be “Honour Killing”

| 18/02/2009 | 0 Comments

(Huffington Post): The crime drips with brutal irony: a woman decapitated, allegedly by her estranged husband, in the offices of the television network the couple founded with the hope of countering Muslim stereotypes. Muzzammil "Mo" Hassan is accused of beheading his wife last week, days after she filed for divorce. Authorities have not discussed the role religion or culture might have played, but the slaying gave rise to speculation that it was the sort of "honor killing" more common in countries half a world away, including the couple’s native Pakistan. Go to article

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