Archive for October 14th, 2010

Premier & deputy both o’seas

| 14/10/2010 | 49 Comments

(CNS): Education Minister Rolston Anglin is acting as premier again as a result of both the premier and the deputy premier being overseas. McKeeva Bush in his capacity as Minister of Finance is in Tampa, Florida, where he is attending the American Society of Health Risk Management Conference and Exhibition. Bush is expected back on island tomorrow (Friday 15 October) and will be remaining in the Cayman Islands throughout next week, the premier’s press office said.  Meanwhile, Deputy Premier Juliana O’Connor Connolly and Cline Glidden MLA are in the Bahamas, where they are attending the Caribbean Renewable Energy Forum Conference.  

Glidden is attending the Nassau conference in relation to his responsibilities for the landfill and the recently issued Waste to Energy RFP, which fall under the deputy premier’s ministry. According to information from the premier’s press secretary, the latest challenges, solutions, technologies and projects in renewable energy will be discussedand debated at this conference. 
 
The Cayman Islands delegation in Tampa comprises over 30 representatives from the industry, government and CIMA.  The Cayman Islands is a regular exhibitor at the American Society of Health Risk Management, the press office said.  The premier was also scheduled to give a brief address at the Cayman Islands reception on Thursday evening.
 
CNS asked the premier’s press office for details of all the Cabinet minister and government MLA travel plans over the next week, but aside from confirming that Bush would be in Cayman next week, the office was unable to say where other government members would be.

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Cops charge Forbes murder suspects

| 14/10/2010 | 2 Comments

(CNS): Police have now charged two of the men arrested in connection with the killing of Jack Forbes with murder. Forbes (49) was reportedly beaten to death at a shopping plaza in Bodden Town in the evening of 15 October. The two men who are aged 20 and 35 years have not been named but are due to appear in court tomorrow. Police arrested four men in connection with the killing but two have since been released on bail. Forbes body was discovered by paramedics at the Plazza Odessa who were unable to revive the man who has sustained numerous wounds after what was described by witnesses as an attack by several people.

 
Forbes had recently been released from Northward prison after serving some ten years on a manslaughter charge for the killing of Steve Watler in May 2000. His murder is the seventh of this year and the first not to involve a firearm.
 
Police have had considerable success in solving this year’s killings as charges have been brought in all but one of the seven murders though 2010. Police have yet to solve the killing of 32 year old Courtney Spence who was gunned down on the night of 28 January in George Town. Spence was found in the car park of where he worked as a production manager for Progressive Distributors in Sparky Drive, in the industrial area at around 11:10pm after finishing his shift.

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Heineken 7’s launches for 2010

| 14/10/2010 | 0 Comments

(CRFU): As 2010 quickly draws to a close and the Island edges ever closer to the much anticipated 2011 15’s season, the Cayman Rugby Union is hosting the Heineken 7’s tournament every Saturday in October. Local 7’s games (as will all local rugby games) are now drawing international interest thanks to live and free internet streaming on www.caymanrugbytv.com with knowledgeable and humorous game commentary from CRFU president Derek Haines. The Heineken 7’s series is as always split into 2 divisions (Premier & Social) with the premier division hotly contested by the O’Neill Wolfhounds, The Ama Tsotsi (fielding an all South African contingent of players) and the Heineken Thunder. The Heineken Thunder is a new addition to the 7’s series in lieu of no national 7’s squad being fielded this year.

 
The larger (in more ways that one) social division is fielding 4 teams this year with the Omni Remax Knackers, Maples, the Heineken Clydesdale Lights and the Omni Sharks.
 
WEEK 1 Week 1 of the 7’s kicked off on October 2nd thanks to a break in the rain long enough to give the South Sound Rugby pitch time to drain and both divisions were evenly matched on the field. In the Social division the Omni Remax Knackers, the Clydesdales and Maples all shared 1 win a piece whilst the Omni Sharks, a team made up solely from the Cayman National U19’s squad running out unscathed thanks to superior speed and fitness.
 
The Premier Division was also a close affair if only for the Ama Tsotsi and the Heineken Thunder as both teams made little work of the O’Neill Wolfhounds. The Wolfhounds, a strong team on paper could not find their stride against either of their opponents and were beaten convincingly in both their encounters of the day. The decider of the division between the Ama Tsotsi and the Thunder was an affair to be decided off the pitch sadly! The game ended a 10-10 draw thanks in no small part to the efforts of the Thunder “go to” player Ratu Nemesio Wakanibua putting the lions share of his teams points on the board throughout the day but his efforts were outshone by the eagle eyes ofMark Woollard, team manager of the Thunder who spotted that during play the Ama Tsotsi had fielded an ineligible player in John Murphy of the Wolfhounds and as a result forfeited the game.
 
 
WEEK 2: With rain still threatening to affect play the rugby gods brought out the sunshine once more on Saturday 9 October to see some more hard-hitting, if not always fast paced rugby action.
 
In the Social Division the Heineken Clydesdale Lights slumped to 3 straight defeats to quicker opposition. It was yet again the Omni Sharks who were to shine in the division as they made it 6 wins in 2 weeks over all their opponents even if the best efforts of the Clydesdales to bully the younger players into submission with a 15’s style pick n’ go style of play didn’t work. Maples were triumphant over the Knackers to take 2 place in the division.
 
In the Premier division the Wolfhounds put in a much improved performance with the inclusion of former Cayman 7’s national captain Johnny Doak but were still unable to undo The Ama Tsotsi or the Ratu Show.
 
Once again eyes were keenly fixed on the match up between the Ama Tsotsi and the Heineken Thunder and with the inclusion of Etienne Duverage the Ama Tsotsi were fancied to undo the deadlock which they found themselves in only the week previous and the Ama Tsotsi took the match 14-12 with only a single conversion being the difference between the teams.
 
With light fading the Premier division held a final game which was missed in week 1 and looked to be going all the Ama Tsotsi’s way having taken a 10-0 lead in the first half but with Camillo Andres yellow carded for a dangerous tackle on Phil Coley of the Thunder the opening for Ratu to put points on the board was there once more and the Ama Totsi lead soon disappeared. The game ended early due to bad light with the final score 10-10
 
With 3 weekends of play still to go anything could happen in either division.

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Islands’ oldest race gets backing from bank

| 14/10/2010 | 1 Comment

(CNS): One of the country’s oldest annual sporting events will be in its 37th year next February when teams line up to take on the Cross Island Road Relay. Organised by the Hash House Harriers Fidelity will provide sponsorship which is thelongest continually held and one of the most popular sporting events race in the Cayman Islands. Last year a record 56 teams competed and organisers said they hope to have similar numbers in this year’s race. Participants from with various abilities and from all walks of life are invited to hit the Cayman roads for the event originally founded by PE teacher Winston Skinner in 1975. 

The event consists of six member relay teams with each member of the relay running approximately 4 miles. The first leg begins at Gun Bay and the last let will finish at either the Truman Bodden Sports Complex or Smiths Cove (to be determined).  The race begins at 6 am sharp on Sunday 6 February with registration and packet pickup scheduled for the Saturday 5 February from noon until 4pm at Camana Bay.
“Fidelity supports and promotes a healthy lifestyle and a health conscious community and thus once again we are proud to partner with the Hash House Harriers for the Cross Island Road Relay,” said Tom Gammage, CP and Regional Marketing Manager, Fidelity Cayman Limited. “Any excess funds collected by the Hash are donated to charity and so we look forward to seeing serious – and not so serious – runners signing up for this worthy and fun cause.”
The Hash House Harriers is a global non-competitive running and social club which originated in Kuala Lumpur in 1983. The club currently has 1,922 running clubs in 183 countries throughout the world. For more information visit www.caymanhash.com or email caymanhash@gmail.com
 
 

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Armed masked men shoot out shop door

| 14/10/2010 | 27 Comments

(CNS): Updated 5pm – Burglars used a gun to shoot open the doors of a George Town store last night and then made off with the cash register and cigarettes. George Town detectives have launched an investigation following the aggravated burglary of Reflections Food For Less in Godfrey Nixon Way. The four masked men, two of which were armed with a gun, fired several shots at the doors of the premises, shattering the glass, at around 1:30am Thursday morning 14 Oct. The suspects all of whom were wearing  masks were last seen running away with the cash register towards Washington Boulevard.  (Photo-Bullet hits chocolate -by Dennie WarrenJr) 

Although staff were on duty in the store at the time no one was injured. One of the men involved is described as wearing a red shirt with a shirt covering his face.
 
This is not the first time that Reflections has been the target of criminals; most recently the location near the airport was targeted by a robber using a modified flare gun. 
 
After police left the scene today, local photographer Dennie Warren Jr was able to capture this picture of a bullet (right), which was overlooked by RCIPS SoC officers, on the shelves between the produce.
 
The CCTV footage has also now been released and can be viewed here on Cayman27.
 
Anyone who was in the area at the relevant time and witnessed the incident or the men running
off from the scene is asked to call GeorgeTown CID on 949-4222 or the confidential Crime
Stoppers number 800-8477 (TIPS).

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UK cops reveal day in life through tweets

| 14/10/2010 | 0 Comments

(Daily Mail): One of Britain’s busiest police forces has taken to the social network site Twitter to show the huge workload faced by its officers. Greater Manchester Police was tweeting every incident it deals with for 24 hours from 5am. In the first six hours there were around 500 tweets sent out by the force, covering a wide range of incidents – from serious crime to the more mundane and bizarre. These included call 412 from a woman who asked for help to sue the Benefits Agency because she had no money. And call 686 was a complaint that a man shouted ‘you’re gorgeous’ to woman as well as scores of 999 calls from children playing with their parents’ mobile phones.

 
Chief Constable Peter Fahy hopes today’s exercise will enable the public – and politicians – to see what his officers deal with on a daily basis. ‘Policing is often seen in very simple terms, with cops chasing robbers and locking them up,’ he said. ‘However, the reality is that this accounts for only part of the work they have to deal with. A lot of what we do is dealing with social problems such as missing children, people with mental health problems and domestic abuse. Often these incidents can be incredibly complex and need a lot of time, resource and expertise.”
 
 

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Evolution and Christianity

| 14/10/2010 | 195 Comments

The majority of people today think that evolution and Christianity are incompatible. Many unbelievers think that science has proved Christianity “wrong”, and consequently just as many Christians refuse to believe in evolution, even though it is taught to their kids in school. Amazingly, both parties are blind to the facts: evolution and Christianity are remarkably harmonious.

In what follows, we will show Christians how to understand evolution and show unbelievers why Christianity is a rational and logical modern day religion.

When we look at the scientific theory of evolution alongside the “7 Days” creation story in Genesis we see that they are very similar. First of all, there is no need to interpret the “7 Days” as literal days. Everyone who reads their Bible knows you very often read it allegorically. Which makes sense because to read allegorically is to read spiritually; i.e. to find the meaning behind the words. Both evolution and the Bible show us that the universe evolves towards higher forms of life, meaning it moves towards God, who is life.

Let’s begin.

At the very beginning, as Science tells us, a tiny ‘singularity’ exploded and the universe came into being with a magnificent bang. The “Big Bang” was the beginning of time and space. Genesis agrees, saying that on the first day “God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light” (Genesis 1: 3).

Scientists tell us that millions of years later, the earth was formed by probably rolling out of our sun, and began spinning around the star. The earth was hot for a long time, but over millions of years a hospitable atmosphere was eventually formed, as rains fell upon the earth creating rivers, lakes, and oceans. On the third day God said, "Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear" (Genesis 1: 9). The earth was now a water-bearing planet, and was ripe to give fruit.

Before long (or indeed, after a very long time) the very first forms of life appeared on earth. It was very simple life; bacteria life. Over the course of millions and millions of years, this bacteria life had evolved into a more complex thriving plant kingdom. On the third day God said, "Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds." (Genesis 1: 11).

Then evolution tells us that millions of year’s later, life advanced into even higher forms, and all sorts of animal species appeared on the earth. On the fifth day God said, "Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky" and "creatures that move along the ground, and wild animals, each according to its kind." (Genesis 1: 20 – 24).

Finally (200,000 years ago) evolution tells us that Homo sapiens, persons like you and me, appeared into this world. On the sixth day God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness” and “in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1: 26 – 27). Last, according to the time scale of both evolution and the Bible, human beings came into existence, the most intelligent and sophisticated of all life forms to date.

So we see that evolution is actually found in the very first page of the Bible. I often wonder why so many fail to see that. Christians should take pride that evolution is found in the Bible because it shows the genius of the author of Genesis, who, despite living three thousand years ago, shows remarkable insight into the creation of the world.

And we also see that both Scriptures and evolution show that the earth evolved toward higher forms of life: from stars, to plants, to animals, to humans. The universe definitely evolves towards more consciousness and awareness. Stars cannot be considered alive, but plants are alive. Animals are more alive (conscious) than plants, as evidenced by their wide range of instinct and spontaneity. Human beings are even more alive (more conscious) than animals: we can travel into space, and unlock the mysteries of the atom.

And yet the fundamental question that evolution poses for us is: how did all of life, including persons like you and me, evolve from that tiny “singularity” so long ago?

And it is precisely this question that Christianity answers more satisfactorily than atheism or agnosticism. The most popular answer by atheism and agnosticism is that it happened “by chance.” To me, that is intellectually unsatisfying, for science has revealed to us that there are determined reasons for everything in the universe. Furthermore, physics tells us that there are causes and effects, and that an effect must equal its cause. This means that if life (the effect) appears in the universe, it is because it was present in the very beginning (the cause). And this is what Christianity (and Islam and Judaism, for that matter) maintain: that God (who is life) is the First Cause – the reason life ever appeared in the universe at all. Thus, despite popular belief, an evolution towards higher forms of life is the clearest evidence for the existence of God.

Now, of course, atheists and agnostics might say they “don’t know” how life and persons appeared in the universe, which is a fair enough answer, but it is still not more logical than the Christian answer. Whereas atheism and agnosticism lack a proper general interpretation of the universe, Christians can at least explain the physics of evolution.

Finally, I would like to point out to Christians what evolution means for their belief about heaven and the resurrection. Because the universe moves towards higher forms of life and consciousness, and God is life and consciousness, we see that what is actually happening is that God is uniting the universe to Himself. This is why the universe moves towards higher forms of life and consciousness: God is attracting it. Over millions of years, God has lifted from the depths of nothing the magnificent living structure of the biosphere, with the intention of uniting it to Himself. “My Father is at work till now, and so am I” (John 5: 17). This simply means that the end of evolution (of which humanity is at the forefront) is what Christians know as the “resurrection,” or “heaven;” when God is “all in all.”

Christians need not be afraid of science because science is a search for truth and God is truth. Christians should look to science for answers about their faith. Christians can be comforted by the fact that their faith is logical and rational. Furthermore, when a Christian does not trust science, they thereby close the door on potential people who might be interested in Christianity but cannotaccept a faith that distrusts science. Yes, human beings evolved from star-dust, but did you not know that “out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham” (Luke 3: 8) and that “you are dust, and unto dust you shall return” (Genesis 3: 19)? Modern day science can show Christians clearer ways to envision doctrines such as the Trinity, the Body of Christ, Adam and Eve, Heaven and Hell, but we will have to leave that discussion for another time.

I’ll simply end by saying that if I had to believe that evolution was not true, I could not be a Christian. But if I had to believe that Christianity was not true, I could not understand evolution.

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Deputy premier gets new car

| 14/10/2010 | 152 Comments

(CNS): The Ministry of District Administration has purchased a new VIP car for Deputy Premier Juliana O’Connor Connolly, CNS has learned. Both the Premier’s Office and the Protocol Office have denied involvement with the purchase of the new SUV, which has cost the public purse almost $46,000. The car (left) was bought by the ministry at a time when government departments are being asked to make deep cuts in operational expenses. Chief Officer Kearney Gomez admitted the Ford Expedition was purchased using money from the 2009/10 ministerial budget. (Photo Dennie WarrenJr)

Prior to this acquisition O’Connor-Connolly was assigned an official vehicle by the Protocol Office but Gomez said this vehicle had since been returned.
 
"It was considered appropriate to provide the deputy premier with a suitable vehicle which could facilitate transport for her and related ministry transport," Gomez told CNS but did not indicate what was wrong with the protocol car.
 
The senior civil servant defended the decision to go ahead with the purchase of the new vehicle without the apparent involvement or support of the premier or the Protocol Office. "For the record, it should be noted that all ministries and portfolios of government have their own budgets which does not necessitate having to seek Cabinet’s approval or the support of the premier," he said. "With only two protocol vehicles, the vehicle which was returned will now be available to provide back up for the premier as well as to accommodate visiting dignitaries," said Gomez as he confirmed the $45,730.00 cost of the new Ford.
 
With this purchase government now has five VIP cars, three on Grand Cayman, one on Cayman Brac and another on Little Cayman. The two protocol cars, registration POO1 and POO2, were being used by the premier and deputy premier respectively and both have police drivers and televisions and other upgrades. It is unclear if the new car will have a police driver as is the case with the POO1 and POO2
 
The decision to purchase the ministry car was made without the knowledge and support of the Protocol Office. "We are unaware of a third car being purchased for use by this office. This car has not been bought by us we know nothing about it," a spokesperson from the office said when CNS first learned about the arrival of the deputy premier’s new vehicle. McKeeva Bush has also denied contributing to this decision. "The premier was not involved with the purchase the vehicle in any way," the premier’s press secretary told CNS this week.
The protocol changes ushered in by the 2009 Cayman Islands Constitution have been blamed by the premier for the added benefits his and the deputy premier’s offices have both received. However, the premier has been criticised for the increase in benefits he has received since the new Constitution was implemented.
 
The full array of the benefits received by the premier, the deputy premier and other government ministers are currently the subject of a freedom of information inquiry by CNS.
 
The request for a breakdown of all set benefits and expense allowances (over and above MLA office allowance) for each Cabinet minister, such as clothing, travel, entertainment, accommodation, and communications, as well as additional expenses each minister has claimed since the last elections was sent to the Cabinet Office 11 August, which forwarded it to each individual ministry.
 
The Health Ministry responded well within the time allowed by the FOI law on the 30 August and the Education Ministry responded today (13 October), both saying that their ministers had not claimed any expenses. The other three ministries have yet to respond.

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Cayman’s ‘golden’ girl returns home

| 14/10/2010 | 21 Comments

(CNS): Cayman’s elite athlete and first ever Commonwealth Games gold medallist, Cydonie Mothersill, came home to a hero’s welcome on Wednesday evening when she landed at Owen Roberts International Airport. The sprinter who powered to the top of the podium in the 200 metre finals in Delhi on Monday was greeted by family, friends and many cheering fans as well as a few dignitaries as she arrived home wearing her medal. Government officials say the premier and the sports ministry will host a public tribute to Mothersill in Heroes Square on Monday. As she stepped down from the aircraft yesterday night Mothersill waved at the supporters in the airport gallery who had come out to greet her. Her message on returning home: “Never give up.” (Photo by Dennie Warren Jr)

The 32 year old sprinter certainly hasn’t and the commonwealth gold is the icing on the cake of what has been one of Mothersill’s best ever seasons. She won the 200 metre final in 22.8 seconds, beating England’s Abiodun Oyepitan. The win was an emphatic one for Mothersill, who told Cayman27 (see video below) after the race that she knew she was going to win as she had the desire in her heart and no one was going to pass her.

With Cayman’s small population Mothersill’s gold medal-winning performance attracted a lot of media attention and placed the Cayman Islands on the map. When interviewed by the international press this week Mothersill said that she had faced the challenges because she had “Cayman soul”.
 
Mothersill competed a day late following an appeal over the disqualification of the fastest qualifier, Elena Artymata of Cyprus, who stepped out of her lane in her semi-final. Mothersill said she tried to blank out the disqualification disruption. "The officials made the decision. It was not my concern. I knew what I had to do and that was to finish on top of the podium," she said. "I finished fourth in Melbourne and I knew that was not going to happen today." 
  
The elite athlete has secured herself a place in Cayman’s history books as the country’s first ever Commonwealth gold medal winner and the second competitor to bring a medal home from those games. The first person to win a Commonwealth medal was Kareem Streete-Thompson, who leapt to a bronze medal in Manchester in 2002.
 
Government has now confirmed that there will be a special tribute evening to the sporting hero on Monday, 18 October, in Heroes Square, George Town, and the public is invited.

“Cydonie’s win is a significant achievement – one of national pride. It is therefore fitting that we honour her with a public event. In addition, celebrating such an accomplishment nationally will show our children the heights to which they too can aspire,” said Sports Minister Mark Scotland.   

 
 

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Teenage murder suspect faces trial delay

| 14/10/2010 | 0 Comments

(CNS):  A sixteen year old boy who has been charged with the murder of Marcus Mauricio Duran has had his trial postponed as a result of a prosecution request to try the teenager alongside a second man who has also been charged with the same murder. The boy was scheduled to go to trial alone on 22 November, however that date has now been vacated as the crown makes its application to try the teen alongside Raziel Jeffers (left) who was charged in connection with the crime in West Bay in March only last month. The teenager’s attorney has objected to the application however on the grounds that it could be prejudicial to the boy’s case. (Photo Cayman27)

 
The defence pointed out that twenty six year old Jeffers is also charged with the murder of Damion Ming also in March and Marcus Ebanks, last July, as well as the attempted murder of teenager Adryan Powell , who is now confined to a wheel chair, in the same shooting.
 
As a result of Jeffers’ other cases the teen’s lawyer, Lucy Organ of Samson McGrath said this could prove prejudicial to her client.
 
Duran a twenty nine year old Ecuadorian national from George Town was shot and killed in the stairwell of an apartment block in Maliwinas Way, West Bay at around 7:30pm on 11 March and died as a result of a gun shot wound to the head. The teen who is accused of the murder was also shot in the leg on the same evening.
 
Police said at the time that they did not think the shooting was gang related as Duran was believed to be connected to illegal numbers leading police to speculate that the murder was a robbery gone wrong.

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