Premier’s radio show canned till further notice

| 17/11/2011

P4020016.JPG(CNS): The radio talk show aired on the government-owned station hosted by former UDP Cabinet minister, Dr Frank McField, and local personality Lorna Bush has been silenced. Community Voices, a late afternoon phone-in show which airs Tuesdays and Thursday in the drive-time slot, was cancelled today (Thursday 17 November) and sources told CNS that the programme has been placed on hold until further notice. The show was aired on Radio Cayman at the direction of the premier, and according to his press office McKeeva Bush was paying  “a stipend to the on air talent of Community Voices” from his own money.

The government station confirmed in the summer that the show was not a Radio Cayman production and neither of the hosts were paid or employed by the station but that it was directed to provide the air time by the premier.

“Radio Cayman received verbal directives from the Ministry of Finance, Tourism and Development,” the information manager told Ezzard Miller in response to the FOI request about the details of the business case to launch a second talk show on the heels of the long running Talk Today programme.

At the time Miller said he had concerns that Community Voices was party political propaganda and government resources should not be used to promote party politics. He pointed out that the premier was using a known party operative to promote himself through the public’s radio station.

The premier has for some time been seeking ways to promote his government’s agenda via the media and has explored several ideas for creating a UDP newsletter or promotional website.

When the premier first came to office he had continued the weekly televised government press briefings started by the previous PPM administration but those meetings were soon reduced in frequency before they were stopped altogether. Bush accused the media of twisting government’s message and began issuing statements in recorded broadcasts on television and radio or from the Legislative Assembly.

Earlier this year Bush announced plans for a government television channel that would broadcast the proceedings in the Legislative Assembly, government’s policy position and emergency information, which would allow the public to see the House in action and not, as he said, distorted by the media.

Bush had stated at a public meeting in North Side in April that the TV station would be launched in June. Since then officials have said the launch is anticipated at the end of this year. WestStar TV has agreed to supply the channel free of charge and it will be added to customers’ packages.

Bush said his government had to be able to get its message out and important information across to the people.  “We will also televise the proceedings of the Legislative Assembly,” hesaid. “There will be a regular news broadcast of government information.

The policy and position of the elected government on issues will also be communicated on this channel,” the premier added at the time, stating that the country could not continue to rely on the skewed reports of CNS.

The opposition has criticised the premier for dropping the regular press briefings, and Opposition Leader Alden McLaughlin said he understood the premier needed “all the ‘PR’ he could get” but the show, Community Voices, was inappropriate as public resources should not be used for propaganda.

See FOI response on Community Voices here

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  1. The Lone Haranguer says:

    Oooops he did not toe the company line ?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Ah well. Mac is probably having some financial shortfall now the he has to pay the other Mc to defend his suit against CNS. Probably just a matter of priorities and the cash flow situation will soon resolve itself if he collects on his suit.

  3. Anonymous says:

    anybody want to remind me of frank's prior convictions?????

  4. Absurdistani says:

    Seems like Dr. Frank can't keep a job.

    Appointed as Head of Cayman's Recycling programme. Lost that one.

    Elected as MLA for GT. Lost that one.

    Radio talk show host. Lost that one.

  5. I Care says:

    Una Na ga listen, I told ya So … Big Bully Mac , DON'T GET INVOLVED WITH HIM AT NO COST, OR IT WILL COST YOU, LOL LOL

  6. Anonymous says:

    LOL  Good everything else that he is doing should be cancel halliujah .

  7. Mojo44 says:

    Can't honestly say i am going to miss it. At least i can get back to 105.3 the Breeze for easy listening music Good Riddance to Frank,s political Bul@#&% voted from office hopefully never to return. I wish others would take this as one of the lessons in life. Those who had a good opportunity to do some positive and fails to do so, should not expect people now to have to listen to these failures.And that goes for the other talk show who's host are legends in their own minds.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Sorry to hear that he Premier's propaganda outlet has been silenced.

  9. Anon says:

    Say what? They were critizing their sponsor?

    Off with their heads!

  10. Anonymous says:

    Oh Boy!

    I wonder if Chuzzo will be next on the chopping block…

    No more late nite carousin wid da UDP Boyz

  11. Anonymous says:

    This show was definitely not serving any purpose other than to promote Frank's own personal Agenda and to air his own personal gripes and grievances.  Mrs. Bush added some semblance of balance but unfortunately was rarely given an opportunity to contribute. Callers (though few and far apart) were re-buffed and chastised by the Host. If one were comparing the Morning Hogwash Show and the Afternoon Frank Tirade, it would be similar to comparing PPM and UDP. One is bad and the other option is just as bad! That's my take!


  12. Anonymous says:

    Thank God we don't have to hear anymore of this!

  13. Anonymous Caymanian says:

    I knew it wouldn’t be long befor the Premier took Lorna & Dr Frank off the radio! Just last week I heard Dr Frank tell a caller that he didn’t agree with everything the current government is doing. I guess it didn’t take long for that comment to backfire.
    Talk about swallowing your own foot!

  14. Knot S Smart says:

    Does this mean that Mac fired poor Frank?

  15. Anonymous says:

    this article sums up everything that is wrong with this pathethic government……..they fail at everything even their own attempts at propaganda………

  16. Dred says:

    Best news all day.

  17. Anonymous says:

    We really are beginning to look like a banana republic. Although the opposition to Mr Bush is pathetic, he needs to go.So we need another bunch of failed Caymanian civil servants/lawyers/businessmen to run at the next election as the only way they can earn an income because that is how we elect our MLAs in Cayman. The many succesful Caymanians-partners in law firms, accounting firms, running their own businesses etc – won't  put themselves through the nastiness of politics here. We will never progress as long as our "talent" (Jesus, I can't believe I used that word) pool is as narrow/failed as it is.

  18. McCarron McLaughlin says:

    This is Mckeeva's style, prop you up and then gut you out  in the public!

    Some people just can't learn.

  19. Stiffed-Necked Fool says:

    You know that a couple days ago, me and a few of my friends were saying that this show will soon come to an abrupt end as we heard Dr Frank criticizing the Government over the Housing Scheme and how the Government tore down the houses he built and are treating the former house owners so bad. Well our words have come to pass and we had a laugh while making our suggestions, but now we will have a bigger laugh now as Dr Frank was 1 of his few non-elected supporters. It goes to show that no matter who you are, you are never safe if you say anything against the Dictator!

  20. Anonymous says:

    Something to do with the trip to London. Maybe he was told.

    Radio Cayman should be independent just alike the BBC


    • Anonymous says:

      We have independent radio shows already, but if they criticise the UDP then people call them PPM-biased, instead of seeing that they were criticising wrong-doind in their eyes.

  21. Son of Thunder says:

    Dr. Frank Mcfield should know by now that you should never cross Mckeeva Bush because he is extremely XXXXXX! All seemed to be going really well with Mckeeva Bush's radio show hosted by Dr. Frank Mcfield & what's her name, but then in recent weeks Dr. Mcfield has publicly criticized the UDP government about their poor handling of "low cost" housing. Oooooops Dr. Mcfield, that's a no-no as far as a dictator is concerned! Good bye & good riddance.

    • Anonymous says:

      What's especially funny about that is that it was the same Dr. McField whowas under criminal investigation for his handling of Affordable Housing. It ended with a conclusion of "unsufficient evidence".

  22. PING PONG says:

    This shows the stability of our leader. He has never showed any respect to anyone but foreigners with money. The people of this country have never seen his flaws. The more voters complain the more he travles. He complained about the other government spending money and what does he do? He is worse. We are caught in a web of trechery never before seen in these Islands. Our leader says we don't need education and no one says a word. If we don't unite and take our country back then Dart and the Chinese will be playing ping pong with our birthright for the rest of our short lives. Do on to other as they do on to YOU.