Archive for December 24th, 2009

Leaders offer their Christmas wishes to the people

Leaders offer their Christmas wishes to the people

| 24/12/2009 | 22 Comments

(CNS): The Premier & Leader of the Opposition have both acknowledged that 2009 has been a difficult and challenging year for many in the Cayman Islands in their respective Christmas messages. “Even here on our small islands, there are people who are not sure where their next meal is coming from,” said McKeeva Bush who called upon the people to do something for others. Meanwhile, Kurt Tibbetts said that while it is only natural to feel apprehension the festive period was a time to a reflect on things that did go our way. Messages below.

Message from Premier McKeeva Bush:  My fellow Caymanians, our guest workers, and those visitors to our warm and beautiful Islands: it is indeed a great pleasure to bring Season’s Greetings, at this most joyous time of the year.

I am indeed humbled when I reflect on the many blessings that God has bestowed on us all and – personally speaking – on my own family. As believers know, our Lord Jesus Christ came to us through miraculous and divine birth by the Virgin Mary.

From that time until today, the Year of Our Lord 2009, He demonstrated, in person and in writings, how to live an exemplary life; a life which everyone should strive to emulate. Lest we forget, I will mention the Biblical scripture: “The LORD has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with our God.”

The earthly life that Jesus endured, the Faith He promoted, and the Grace He still offers, all serve to assure us of the promise of personal salvation. The Good Book also assures us of harmony and of the possibility of a good life upon Earth – if we so choose, individually and collectively. During this Season of Seasons, the beauty of life, and also its harsh realities, are remembered as we celebrate the birth of Jesus, and the true meaning of Christmas.

Personally, as this is my first Christmas to greet the country as Premier, I am humbled at the confidencethat you, the people of this country, have placed in me.  But who am I, but a fallible, mortal man?

As leader, I know full well the challenges we have faced over the past year. Some people have suffered losses in the workplace; others have felt the harsh blow of the global economic crisis; and, most regrettable, many children and young people feel displaced and unloved.  Yes, even here on our small islands, there are people who are not sure where their next meal is coming from.

In all this, God has continued to be merciful and ever-present in our lives, and in the affairs of our country.  Furthermore, He has granted to some of us the strength and ability to help others in need.  Therefore, for those of us who are more fortunate, Christmas is the perfect opportunity to assist however we can. So, find a friend. Please, share your time, donate money, or provide a festive meal for a family in need. One of my favourite songs expresses an important message:

“No man is an island, no man stands alone
Each man’s joy is joy to me
Each man’s grief is my own
We need one another, so I will defend
Each man as my brother
Each man as my friend.”

As we go about our customary Christmas duties of buying gifts, decorating trees and preparing elaborate meals, let us each pursue and appreciate the beauty of this holiday, and the love of family and friends.  Let us consider the ‘Reason for the Season’, this Season of Seasons, and seek out less-fortunate neighbours and find ways to uplift our community and our country. Most importantly, let us stay safe and commit to spreading the gifts of love and unity this Christmas, as we strive to live, grow and prosper together.  

This is my advice: Find a new friend; and, be a new friend… this is my theme for Christmas.

May the Good Lord bless you this Christmas, and may you have a joyous holiday time with your families, and may He give us health and strength for the year ahead. God Bless.


Message from Leader of Opposition Kurt Tibbetts: As we come together to celebrate Christmas, all of us will no doubt reflect on what has been a difficult and tumultuous year. Many of us faced personal challenges. Some found themselves out of work, while others experienced the devastating loss of a loved one. We were also challenged as a nation when world events forced us to face the reality that we are not immune to global uncertainty, financial or viral.

And while it is only natural to regard all of this with apprehension, this festive season we should adjust our focus, and reflect instead on those things that did go our way. For one, we had a peaceful hurricane season. Spared from storms we were able to focus on rebuilding Cayman Brac and Little Cayman. And we thank the Lord for that.

Moreover, our people remain hopeful, our traditions are strong, and we have a great love for these Cayman Islands. Most importantly though – all challenges remind us that earthly successes are indeed transient, and that there is more to life. And so, let us celebrate what Christmas is truly about: The birth of our Saviour, Jesus Christ.

For the real joy of the season comes not in the hurrying to get more done, or in buying the perfect gift, but instead, it is found in love and compassion. Because when people look only to their own interests, our world crumbles.  The best gift to receive this Christmas is indeed the love and support of neighbours, family and friends. And so, let us take this time to draw closer to God, and those we love.

Have a happy Christmas and may the New Year be filled with God’s blessings.

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Med student fined & deported over prescription fraud

Med student fined & deported over prescription fraud

| 24/12/2009 | 12 Comments

(CNS): John Michael Peirmatti, a 23-year-old medical student from the United States, was fined over three thousand dollars and was ordered to be deported from the Cayman Islands after he was found guilty of several offences relating to a prescription fraud investigation in Summary Court on Wednesday. Police from the financial crime unit said that prosecution came as a result of an investigation which began in October when police received reports of forged prescriptions being presented to pharmacists on the island.

The RCIPS said that extensive police enquiries were carried out and within a matter of days Peirmatti was arrested. He appeared in summary court yesterday, on three counts of making a document without authority and two counts of uttering a false document for which he received the fine of CI$3,250 and the deportation order.

Detective Inspector Betty Ebanks of the RCIPS Financial Crime Unit said the unit was pleased with the result. “This conviction came about as a result of a co-ordinated effort between the uniform section and the Financial Crimes Unit,” she said. “The commission of fraud on these islands will not be tolerated and we will pursue offenders vigorously. That’s what happened in this case and we are delighted to see that this investigation has led to a successful result at court. The message this sends out is clear offenders will be brought before the courts in Cayman and will be dealt with appropriately.”


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Man bitten in mugging

Man bitten in mugging

| 24/12/2009 | 54 Comments

(CNS): The RCIPS said that George Town detectives are now appealing for witnesses after a 37-year-old woman and her male friend were assaulted and robbed early this morning in West Bay Road. At about 2.45am (Thursday 24 December) the couple were walking close to Crescent Point Village when they were suddenly confronted by three men. One of the men punched the woman in the face and pushed her to the ground before grabbing her purse. The man tried to stop the men running off but in the struggle he was bitten on the chest and sustained a finger injury.

Police said that the suspects reportedly ran off into Crescent Point Village and a short time later they were seen within the grounds of Treasure Island Resort. The resort security staff and Police gave chase but the men evaded capture and were last seen near to the Pistol Bar on Eastern Avenue. The woman was shaken but did not require medical attention following the attack. The man was taken to George Town Hospital and released following treatment.

One of the men responsible is described as being 5’10” in height with a dark complexion. He was wearing a blue striped short. No descriptions are available for the other two men involved. The stolen purse is described as being white with silver hoops. The purse contained a pair of shoes, a small amount of cash and some cosmetics.

DC Ronald Francis of George Town CID appealed for witnesses to the incident or the perpetrators. “I would ask anyone with information about the robbery, or anyone who may have seen the men running away from the scene to come forward. I would also be keen to speak to anyone who might know the whereabouts of the stolen property. Information can be passed to George Town CID on 949-4222 or Crime Stoppers on 800-8477 (TIPS),” he said.

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Elusive flu vaccine promised by year end

Elusive flu vaccine promised by year end

| 24/12/2009 | 4 Comments

(CNS): Following the continued delay in the arrival of the Swine Flu vaccine in the Cayman Islands, Medical Officer of Health Dr. Kiran Kumar has said, that based on assurances from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) the H1N1 10,000 does of the vaccine are expected here by the end of this month and will be available to the public in early January. Dr Kumar also sought to allay fears over recalls of the vaccine as he said it was made the same way as the seasonal vaccine but officials would be keeping an eye out for any adverse reactions.  

The minister of health who has voiced his concerns over the delay in the acquisition of the vaccine said he was relieved it would be here shortly. “The flu season is far from over, and I am very relieved that we will soon start to vaccinate our health care workers and high risk population. However, I urge people to continue to take the usual precautions such as good personal hygiene and staying home when sick,” Mark Scotland said.

The vaccine supply for the Cayman Islands is produced by Sanofi Pasteur in France, approved by WHO and European Union.

“We will receive 10,000 doses initially and we will have enough quantities to vaccinate everyone who wishes to have it as the demand will be monitored and additional supplies will be procured as needed” said Dr Kumar.

In keeping with international guidelines, the initial doses of the vaccine will be offered first to designated priority groups: health care workers and support staff to ensure there is no disruption to health care services; pregnant women in any trimester and those who are most at risk of severe disease i.e. diabetes, those with chronic respiratory, cardiac (excluding hypertension) renal, liver and neurological disease. Later, essential workers and all others will be offered the vaccine. 

In response to concerns about international media reports of recalls of certain lots of the vaccine Dr. Kumar explained that the 2009 H1N1 influenza vaccine is made the same way as seasonal flu vaccines, which have very good safety track records. “Any side effects that have occurred since people started receiving the 2009 H1N1 vaccine have been similar to those experienced following seasonal influenza vaccine., However the Public Health Department will be closely monitoring for any signs that the vaccine is causing unexpected adverse events and will be guided by recommendations from the Pan American Health Organization and the World Health Organization,” he added.

Kumar said the main objective of the pandemic Influenza A H1N1 2009 vaccination campaign in the Cayman Islands is to save lives and protect those most at risk of serious infection with this new virus: the next objective is to minimize transmission by protecting as many individuals as possible.

The Public Health Department will issue advisories in the New Year on the dates and sites where the vaccines will be available. The vaccine will be provided at no cost to private practitioners interested to offer the vaccine to their patients.

Dr. Kumar is advising residents to be more informed about the safety of the vaccine by accessing relevant information produced by the Public Health Department and available at the Health Services Authority,, and

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