PPM criticises Mac over treatment of young leader

| 09/11/2010

(CNS): The opposition has taken the country’s premier to task for the way he addressed the leader of the youth branch of its party at a recent public meeting. Describing the apparent gender bias displayed by McKeeva Bush as unseemly, the PPM says he failed to answer the question she posed. The PPM said the country’s leader should not have berated Denise Miller, the president of the young progressives or others at the meeting who asked questions in the manner he did regardless of the party they support but should have answered the “pertinent questions.” (Photo Dennie Warren Jr)

In a statement issued on Tuesday morning, the opposition party states, “The PPM notes the unfortunate manner in which certain members of the public, including the President of the Young Progressives, Denise Miller, were addressed by the Premier at the Town Hall Meeting in Bodden Town, on the night of 2 November.”

On the night in question the premier was dismissive of both Miller and former radio talk show host Carolina Ferriera and referred to them as “darling” and “sweetheart” and noted that the young women were "just PPM” during the open mike session of the meeting.

The PPM pointed out that meeting was held in public, broadcast on radio and television as well as reported on news internet sites, giving the premier’s behaviour a wide audience.

“The PPM believes that no matter what view the Premier holds in relation to Miss Miller, the PPM, or any of its supporters, it was very unseemly for him to berate and display apparent gender bias towards Miss Miller and other members of the public in the manner that he did that night,” the opposition party stated. It said that they had asked pertinent questions which the premier failed to answer.

“The political leader and other parliamentary members of the PPM hereby stand behind Miss Miller in her pursuit of truth, and call upon the premier to observe and practice standards of decorum which are befitting of his high office. To do otherwise does not only a disservice to the Office of the Premier, but also inflicts damage to principles of Open Government and Transparency. The premier should be encouraging young people such as Miss Miller to continue to participate and be involved in national issues. We commend Miss Miller for standing her ground under immense aggression and incivility from the Premier.”

A recent Viewpoint published on CNS by a member of the founding committee of the Crisis Centre and the chair of the Special Advisory Committee on Gender Violence also noted the inappropriate behaviour of the premier. Len Layman said that Bush’s comments were delivered in a “disrespectful, offensive, condescending, gratuitous, and unbecoming” manner, not just of a premier but of anyone.

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  1. Ronnie says:

    CNS – For the sake of transparent reporting please post Miss Millers statement to the Premier before finally ending her speech with an accusation that he had broke the Law in regards to his action of disregarding Tenders Committee Decision on the borrowing which the Premier had already addressed in his speech.

    The other female speaker was very rude and disrespectful in her very sarcarstic "Sir" remark to the Premier as well.  They were all out of order.

    • ha says:

      I would ask for you to explain how exactly the two women were disrespectful, particular the "other female speaker"- was it out of place for her to be asked to be called by her name or by insulting your sensibilities by pointing out she was not to be referred by his choice of pet name?

      I see, however, that you worship at the church of Mac so to ask you for reason is like asking you to live without oxygen- IMPOSSIBLE. 

  2. Anonymous says:

    Please see below that Obama had the same problem when he was running for president. 


    People need to give the Premier a break sometimes.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m not making excuses for Obama because:

      # 1: I don’t like Obama but

      # 2 he did not say it in a condescening manner and

      # 3 he apologized and he is working on getting out of the habit.

      Did McKeeva do # 3?



    • anonymous says:

      How convenient is it forpeople to forget the "BOBO" endearment famoulsy used by Mr.Tibbetts.  For the young lady and others to take umbrage to DArling, Sweet heart etc is certainly political, as many of us have oftrn heard politicians from both sides using these same terms at  question and answer sessions at political meetings.

      Get a grip people lets not see little green men when they are not there!!



  3. Former PPM says:

    The Premier stated he didn’t mean to offend anyone. See News 27.

    Surely this is another one of PPM’s stunts to overshadow the contributions the UDP has been making in two years time, taking us out of a deficit that start as 81 million when PPM was leaving  🙂

  4. Honorable Degree says:

    This simply displays the level of intelligence our King of Kings, Leader of Leaders, "Premier" possesses.

  5. Anonymous says:

    They have all been speaking just like this for years now! Why now, is it such a big deal? Yes if it is belittling, then it should have been dealt with years ago. My question is, why now?

    • Anonymous says:

      Because now you have outspoken, bright, no-nonsense women like Denise and Carolina who speak up and don’t allow this type of behaviour to go unchallenged.

  6. Anonymous says:

    The press secretary was really controlling that microphone, I believe this is getting out of hand.  Is this the beginning of being controlled by a dictator?  may God help us.

  7. Anonymous says:

    how would any of these leaders feel if a female addressed/answered them as "Bobo, you see…", "Yes, Bobo?" which is another term of endearment used by West Bayers but again should be used appropriately!!!!!

    It’s not about sensitivity, unless PPM thinks Kurt can also continue to address people casually in formal settings. So across the board these politicians need to learn protocol and respect for others!!!!!

  8. anonymous says:

    Our culture is of endearements, but not when you reach a certain public position. The Premier’s action that particular night was deliberate and intentional, as he repeated it even after one of the young ladies corrected him on her name.  Please do not bring our culture into this argument now.  The Premier do not want anyone questioning him on his actions, or asking questions, especially about Cohen & Co. Sure signs of a Dictator’s trait. Mr. Premier to be respected in your position, you have to behave, act within the code of conduct of your office, be a statesman and EARN your respect.  Mr. McField please teach your Premier to be respectable in public and then the people will understand the position of a Premier.  Mr. Premier please answer the questions put fort to you that night.  You have still NOT answered the questions. 

  9. Anonymous says:

    This article is a joke.  Grasping at any straws to belittle Mac.

  10. Anonymous says:

    The Premeir IS the voice and face of the Caymanian people.  The fact that so many are outraged about his actions and inactions says a lot.  Is enough of you outraged enough to do something? That says a lot too.

  11. Anonymous says:

    What took so long?  Made my comments on the Premier’s behaviour a week ago.  Mmmm….maybe a new career…..

  12. Anonymous says:


    There is a huge difference.

    The best example I can give would be if you are in the middle of a boardroom standing in front of your boss and colleagues giving a presentation and your boss gets up and says "Sonny don’t you worry about that, you don’t quite understand these things". Would you not feel belittled and embarrassed?

    Do you not think that Mr. Bush would have been offended if one of these women got up and called him Mackeeva? He would have been outraged and demanded to be addressed in a more respectful manner. Which means if he is going to demand this respect than he should in turn respect the people.

  13. Anonymous says:

    You can take the man out the country but you cant take the country out the man. If you aint got no class or upbringing what do you expect – you just cant refine this man – what a "BUTTU"

  14. Johnston says:

    Oh please CNS… this should even be Headline News!  Kurt has used the phrase and many older Caymanians… even grannies use it!


    • Anonymous says:

      you obviously werent there….

      to make things worse…after the first time mac called her darling, she corrected him and said her name was not darling…then mac had the gall to do it again a couple more times….


    • Anonymous says:


      The fact that Kurt and other say it doesn’t make it right if you are addressing people in a public and professional environment, leave it for your home if you so wish. Several months ago I personally have mentioned to PPM members that Kurt Tibbetts should try to speak with more ‘polish’ and using slang doesn’t make some of us believe he ‘is one of us’.

      In my opinion these leaders need to realise that they are representing the Cayman Islands, their districts and are role models for future men and leaders, so be professional, polite and you can still ‘appear’ to be humble!

  15. Scrooge McDuck says:

    Charlotte Witten the Lord Mayor of Ottawa was at a meeting of Lord Mayors wearing a corsage.  One of them approached her and asked "If I smell your rose.. will you blush?"  She replied:  "Not at all.  If I pull your chain will you flush?"

    • Anonymous says:

      Another Charlotte Whitton quote appropriate for this scenario:

      Male Opponent :" Have you ever been mistaken for a man?"

      Charlotte: "No…Have You?"

      These young women are a beacon of hope. Pioneers like Annie Bodden could handle loutish male behavior, and so can they!


  16. Anonymous says:

    if the leader of any other civilised country acted like this in public it would be a resigning matter….. but in cayman…just another day in wonderland….

  17. Anonymous says:

    HE WAS DISGRACEFUL.     i was at the meeting and i was ashame to know that this is the man who goes all over trhe world to repercent this country.  at one stage in the meeting he said that when he went to singapore a person told him that they was listening to what go on in cayman.  i hope that know that they was LISTENING  TO HIM ALSO.  a man who we all call premier must do better in public. he has no respect to the people, ytou dear not ask him a question that do not like. he can see him starting to ruffle his feathers like a turkey in baffling wind.  i hope that he will get a lesson on public speaking.   as for his followers thay are worst than him, when he start with his disrespect thay start to clap him making him believe that he is doing the right thing.  birds of one feather flock together

  18. nauticalone says:

    Glad to see the PPM speak up on this important matter!

    I watched also, and was very embarassed at the Premiers unbecoming and deplorable attitude and behavior.

    Though i can’t say that i was surprised.

  19. Anonymous says:

    It was disgraceful! He had no respect for those young ladies, Austin and even the man who gossiped to him about PPM.  This man holds the highest position in the land and he tried to belittle those people in a public forum, this speaks volumn about McKeeva.  McKeeva you should be ashame of yourself and anyone who supported you that night, is just like you.  You have no respect for the people of these Islands, but you want them to pay for every bit of your expenses.  Every country have oppositions and they are respected, why then don’t you respect the opposition of these Islands?  Respect is earned McKeeva, remember that!!!!

  20. Len Layman says:

    Just to clarify.

     I was a member of the founding committee of the Crisis Centre not "the founder of the Crisis Centre".

    There were many dedicated and caring women and men that were a part of the start of this much needed service to our islands.

    My feelings, as expressed in my viewpoints  submission, speak from my heart.

    I think discussion in the public about this is healthy for our community.  It is our silence and blind acceptance that does us harm, regardless of the topic.

    CNS: Sorry Len – the mistake has been changed.



    • Anonymous says:

      Do the people of Cayman expect any better from Mckeeva Bush? I sure do not! What an embarrassment & national disgrace. Cayman is once again shamed by our "honourable" leader.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Glad that the PPM have spoken out against Mac’s deplorable behaviour. Mac should be ashamed of himself. all those who voted for him should feel even more ashamed!

    • Anonymous says:

      Mac has done FAR worse than that to defend his wonderful pay check and ‘perks’ folks. I’m not surprised at all.

  22. Anonymous says:

    I just heard on Radio Cayman that Dwayne Seymour is thanking all for their support and encouraging everyone to read Psalms 27. Is he serious? For those that dont know, Psalms 27, verse 2 says When the wicked advance against me to devour me, it is my enemies and my foes who will stumble and fall.

    So, he thinks the police are out to get him, and they will stumble and fall? It’s not because he is accused of going with another guy to the Grand Cayman Beach suites and trying to alledgedly beat up another guy? WOW!


  23. Anonymous says:

    Seriously???  A whole press release on this from PPM???  this is not belittling at all!  I often call shops in Cayman, a woman answers and calls me "hun" "darlin" etc…and I’ve never seen or heard from them before!  Do I feel belittled?  NO

    You guys are being WAY too sensitive. 

    • ex-pat Eric says:

      Huge difference between a shop clerk and the Premier! Keeping in mind how much money the people pay for his fence, Xmas lights, car/driver, and all his International appearances, one would think he would act with a higher level of decorum.

    • Anonymous says:

      you obviously did not see what happened on the night!…..

      very crass, classless, spinless behaviour as usual from the premier and then the udp mob hollering and laughing afterwards……pathetic


    • Anonymous says:

      When you called that shop was the phone answered by a Premier of Country? Was it a live broadcast telephone call with a public gathering? Its unfortunate and myopic for you to suggest that this is a matter that does not require some mention.

      Granted they are many other issues that the country is facing, but that in no way means that matters of civility and decorum should be sweep under the carpet.

      Regardless of people’s political choices, the Premier is the ‘leader’ of the government, which is accountable to everyone, regardless of party, gender and age. So to belittle women and the youth, in their pursuit of answers (at a public hearing arranged by the Premier) is very inappropriate.

    • Anonymous says:

      or you are way out of touch 

    • Anonymous says:

      You may not feel belittled, but that was clearly his intention when speaking to these individuals. Do you hear Obama refering to anyone at a meeting as "darling"? No. You won’t. Because it is not curtious. World leaders, and leaders of countries in general, need to have respect no matter what the situation is, or how offended they may feel. You see nothing wrong, and that may be because of how you were brouight up. I assure you, outside of Cayman, this would be and even BIGGER issue. That’s Cayman’s problem…too stuck in the ways in which we are accustomed to (be right or wrong). When you are a leader of a country that must interact with outher world leaders, class is a neccessity, not an option. Mr. Bush is not a leader of the Taliban. Get it?

      • Anonymous says:

        Actually President Obama had the same problem and our Premier when he was running for president in 2008.  He had to make a concerted effort to not to refer to women in such a manner. 

        • anon says:

          I’ll believe THAT when you give us proof to back up your claim about Obama. Obama is far too skilled a politician, and has been for many years, to behaveso sexist. regardless of his personal beliefs, Obama deports himself with class, and it is apparently "who he is".

      • Trueblood says:

        I agree. Can we really compare a Harvard Law graduate to a retired bank teller and life insurance agent??? How some of these people arrive in these positions is beyond me. Common sense alone can only get you so far. Many have relied on just this and made an exceptional life for themselves….kudos to all of you that have! I just feel you should have the academic qualifications for certain positions i.e. leader of a country.

    • Anonymous says:

      you obviously are joking? how can you type those words and expect anyone !!! to accept such a lame cover up. He is embarrasing us, his country and himself. Where are the other UDP Ministers? Are they that afraid and intimidated that they will not stand up for us ? I am sorry but they all are a bunch of wimps. I WAS a UDP Party member but I am hanging that up for good. I am through with the UDP, Mac and his XXX no good cabinet. See you all at the polls !!!!



    • anon says:

      To "seriously?"- you OBVIOUSLY were not there.