Archive for February 25th, 2013

UDP moves to Bodden Town on campaign trail

UDP moves to Bodden Town on campaign trail

| 25/02/2013 | 36 Comments

dump demo (242x300).jpg(CNS): The United Democratic Party will be moving its campaign trail to Bodden Town tomorrow evening but it is not clear who will be on the platform as the former premier has not yet revealed who he well be fielding in the district. While Chris Saunders is expected to be one of the party’s four hopefuls  the public split between McKeeva Bush the interim government will see the other three as yet unnamed UDP candidates running against two of Bush’s former Cabinet colleagues – Dwayne Seymour and Mark Scotland. However, both incumbents and the UDP candidates are likely to find the district a tough campaign ground in light of their support for the proposed relocation of the country’s landfill.

The UDP and the two interim Cabinet members support the ForCayman Investment Alliance with the Dart Group, which proposes to close the George Town dump and open the first phase of a waste-management site close to the wetlands in Midland Acres, an issue which has divided the district. The last time the UDP went to the district the then premier faced a relatively small but angry group of protestors regarding the proposed move.

With both the UDP and the former UDP members all supporting the move the opposition PPM has a serious chance of making a clean sweep in the district where it is fielding the incumbent Anthony Eden, former representative Osbourne Bodden, along with newcomers Al Suckoo and Wayne Panton.

One other independent has declared for the district so far, but with four weeks to go before nomination day no C4C hopefuls have yet announced their candidacy in Bodden Town.

The UDP has still not revealed its intended slate but the party which opened its new party HQ in George Town in last week party officials have stated that the UDP will field a full set of candidates in the three main districts. So far only Chris Saunders has been revealed as a certainty for one of the four BT seats. However, former Coalition to Keep Bodden Town Dump Free member Vincent Frederick who left the advocacy group told his former fellow campaigners that he was looking to join the UDP ticket at the forth coming elections.

Despite his defection from the cause and alleged intention to run with the UDP neither he nor the party have confirmed his candidacy.

The Meeting is scheduled for 7pm at the Bodden Town Post Office Parking Lot and officials from the UDP said everyone is invited to attend.

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Sex offender avoids jail

Sex offender avoids jail

| 25/02/2013 | 54 Comments

(CNS): A 31-year-old man has been given a two year suspended sentence after pleading guilty to the defilement of teenage girl, who was sexually assaulted by the West Bay man. As a result of a list of mitigating factors, including mental health issues, and despite a 40% chance of him re-offending, Andrew Ebanks avoided going to jail Friday when the judge ordered him to attend psychiatric and medical counselling under the alternative sentencing law. Having already served eight months on remand but with a wife and two children to support, the judge said the most important thing was to create the circumstance where the defendant would never commit such an offence in the future.

During sentencing the court heard that Ebanks had forced himself on his victim but the crown did not pursue the second charge against him for rape, content to accept the defendant’s guilty plea on the charge of defilement, leaving the more serious charge on file.

When describing the facts of the case, prosecuting counsel said the teen had hidden under a bed in a locked room to avoid her attacker. Nevertheless, the defendant was said, while drunk, to have pried open the door, pulled the teenager from her hiding place and forced himself upon her. The defendant denied that he raped the young girl and claimed the act was consensual, even though the girl was only thirteen. The teenager did not tell her parents but confided in a friend, who in turn told a family member who made a police report. 

On arrest the defendant admitted having sex with the teen but denied forcing her. “I didn’t mean to do it but I did … I couldn’t help myself, I know I did wrong,” he told the officers.

A social enquiry report revealed a troubling and disturbing history, in which Ebanks himself had been neglected and abused and had faced mental health problems. A local psychiatrist described him as a man with “many significant psychological problems”. The judge said the social enquiry report revealed a total absence of normality in his family relationships throughout his entire life, which were “nothing less than deeply sad”, adding that the defendant had significant medical and emotional difficulties.

Having pleaded guilty at the outset and cooperated completely throughout the investigation with the authorities and as he had no previous convictions, the judge took an approach that he said would help Ebanks change his behaviour. 

Nevertheless, as he handed down his sentence the judge noted the trauma suffered by the teenage victim and the impact it has had on her family. “This is a serious offence and one cannot underestimate the psychological damage and emotional trauma that the young girl and her family have suffered,” Justice Quin said. 

While such an offence would normally attract a custodial sentence, the judge added that Ebanks had already served eight months on remand and since his release he had complied with all of his bail conditions and had been commended by his probation officer. With a full time job and a family to support, the judge said it was important that the defendant continue to provide for his dependents.  

“I have taken into account everything that has been submitted by both counsel and I have read the social enquiry report, the victim impact report and the medical reports relating to the defendant," Justice Quin said in his ruling. “What is of utmost importance is that the court must endeavour to create the circumstance to try to ensure that the defendant does not ever commit or even contemplates committing any such offence again.”

He ordered the two years he imposed to be suspended and, invoking the alternative sentencing law, he said Ebanks was to be placed under the supervision of the Department of Community and Rehabilitation for two years. The judge also directed the defendant to attend psychiatric counselling.

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United wemust stand

United wemust stand

| 25/02/2013 | 24 Comments

Too often in this day and age the youth are not too interested in the political affairs of their country—which presents a problem, especially in the Cayman Islands. It is usually the case that they think politics does not concern them when in actuality government actions encompass the entire population.

For some, going out and having a laugh may seem to be the pinnacle of their agenda, in contrast to the minority that wish to take a stand on the issues that indeed affect us all. I’m not saying young people shouldn’t enjoy their adolescence but they should at the very least exercise their voice and their opinions. It is too frequent that I hear young Caymanians complaining about the political situation, however, these are also the ones who are eligible to vote but do not vote as a part of their respective electorate.

For the youths who are reading this Viewpoint, I would like to suggest some reasons as to why you should vote in these upcoming general elections on May 22nd:

  1. The time is right—and by that I am inferring that an entirely new field of independent candidates has joined the political arena. These candidates are autonomous thinkers who use their conscience when making decisions and do not collectively decide an outcome based on the agenda of other politicians—contrary to the existing political parties.
  2. Your vote does count. You could make adifference. Your right to vote could be the difference between electing a promising government hereafter this election and electing one which fails to serve its country.
  3. Many youths complain about not being able to make entry into the workforce due to there being many foreign professionals which can bargain lower wages here in Cayman. The only solution to this is to be heard so that the elected members of your district can rectify this problem. Whether its immigration reform or diversification of the national economy, you must vote and make that voice of yours be heard or else nothing can be accomplished.
  4. Cayman’s infrastructure is in desperate need of a development and expansion. You may think this has nothing to do with you but when you take into account that tourism is a key industry to these islands, the development and economic potential of the current Port and Airport could be further maximised. Amelioration of any infrastructure carries a multiplier effect: more visitors will surely strengthen the economy.
  5. Lastly, this is your home. The current economic situation shouldn’t be the reason you have to move elsewhere and leave your island behind only for visiting. Only united can the politicians of the future acknowledge us. Remaining quiet is the easiest way to be forgotten.

I believe firmly that as a collective, we the youth of the Cayman Islands, must stand as one united unit. Twenty-years down the line I want to be living in a Cayman that I can enjoy, and a Cayman that my children can enjoy as well. We shouldn’t remain quiet until we think we’ve matured to an age where it finally matters to us. Politics makes business tick. Politics is what can make this island better, or make this island worse.

You choose.

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Athletic meet cancelled

Athletic meet cancelled

| 25/02/2013 | 0 Comments

GTPs Paula Edwards won her 100m heat (m) (281x300).jpg(CNS):  UPDATED: Officials from the Cayman Islands Athletics Association said the planned weekend meet has been rescheduled due to circumstances beyond the CIAA's control and details of the new dates will be released shortly. In the meantime, the upcoming CUC meet will be used as a CARIFTA qualifier.
Young athletes from across Cayman will be competing for a place on Cayman’s CARIFTA team as well as the chance to compete at IAAF Worlds this weekend with the annual Truman Bodden Track Meet.

Hosted by the Cayman Islands Athletic Association the event is one of the association’s major meets as it comes ahead of the Inter-Primary Championships and CARIFTA 2013. As a result officials are expecting a large turn-out of young athletes competing in preparation for the international season. The competition begins at 6pm Friday I March and continues at 9am Saturday, 2 March at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex.

The events and age groups are as follows:


LONG JUMP     M/F 7 – 8, 9 – 10, 11 – 12, 13 – 14, 15 – 16, 17 & OVER
HIGH JUMP     M/F 9 – 10, 11 – 12, 13 – 14, 15 – 16, 17 & OVER
BALL THROW     M/F 7 – 8, 9 – 10, 11 – 12
JAEVLIN     M/F 13 – 14, 15 – 16, 17 & OVER
TURBO JAVELIN     M/F 9 – 10, 11- 12
SHOT PUT     M/F 11 – 12, 13 – 14, 15 – 16, 17 & OVER
DISCUS      M/F 13 – 14, 15 – 16, 17 & OVER


100M /110M HURDLE    M/F 14 – 16, 17 – 19 & OVER
80M      M/F 7 – 8
100M      M/F 9- 10, 11 – 12, 13 – 14, 15-16, 17 & OVER
150M      M/F 7 – 8, 9 – 10
200M      M/F 11 – 12, 13 – 14, 15-16, 17 & OVER
400M      M/F 11 – 12, 13 – 14, 15 – 16, 17 & OVER
800M      M/F 11 – 12, 13 – 14, 15 -16, 17 & OVER
1500M      M/F 13 – 14, 15 – 16, 17 & OVER
3,000M      M/F 13 – 14, 15 – 17, 17 & OVER
4 X 400M     M/F OPEN
4 X 100M     M/F OPEN

Registration is open to ages 7 and above and forms can be obtained by contacting Sana Tugman at 924-1649, Coach Williams at 925-1943 or Coach Yen at 925-6917.  Completed forms may be returned to any of the above persons or to  Registration closes on Wednesday, 27 February at 6:00pm. 

Officials are asked to please make an effort to come out and assist with the various events in order for the meet to run smoothly.

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Young footballers hope Vegas losses stay in Vegas

Young footballers hope Vegas losses stay in Vegas

| 25/02/2013 | 0 Comments

pfl lasvegas 160213 02 (1) (230x300).jpg(PFL): The PFL Youth Football Programme’sUnder 13 team recently returned to the Island following their participation in the 2013 Las Vegas Mayor’s Cup International Showcase in Las Vegas, Nevada, which took place 16-19 February. Although returning from the tournament with a less than glamourous record – one win and three losses-the valuable experience gained will contribute greatly to the players’ development as they begin to fulfil the short and long-term goals organisers and coaches of the Programme have set for these talented youngsters. With an average age of only 12, the team participated in the Under 14 division playing teams from Utah, Nevada and Canada.

Although the players were disappointed with the results, the young men played admirably gaining the respect of many of their opponents, coaches, spectators and tournament officials.

The Mayor’s Cup International Showcase is one of two annual football (soccer) tournaments co-hosted by the Downtown Las Vegas Soccer Club and the City of Las Vegas, the other being the International Tournament, which is played in October. Each year, the tournament welcomes international teams from Canada, Russia, the United Kingdom, Germany, China, Poland, France, Australia, Dominican Republic, Denmark and Africa.

Travelling with the Cayman contingent were coaches Ernie “Gillie” Seymour, Antwan Seymour and Gonzalo McLaughlin along with team manager Norman Joseph and a number of parents.

Playing in very unfamiliar cool conditions, top scorer for the Cayman team was Cayman Athletic forward D’Andre Rowe with many of his teammates making notable contributions including Kameron Mendez, Albertini Holness, Joshua O’Garro, Xavier Comment, Ricardo Wright, Kailan Miller, Kareem Foster, Rico Bodden, Jondane Dawkins and Nicholas Chung.

The PFL Youth Football Programme Under 13s have only been together since March 2011, training once per week and playing in as many friendly games and competitions with local teams in preparation for tournaments such as the Mayor’s Cup. This tournament marked the first time some of these players have travelled overseas and competed. As a team, it is the first time they have travelled and competed together and only the second time they have competed against overseas opposition.

With the many positives arising from this trip and the excellent commitment and performance from the players, the future looks very promising for this team.
PFL Youth Football Programme coach Ernie “Gillie” Seymour said, “The Mayor’s Cup was a great opportunity for our youngsters to experience what it’s like playing in unfamiliar weather conditions, a long way from home with very few “home” supporters in the stands.

Many of these youngsters want to follow in the footsteps of Sebastian Martinez and Kray Foster who now ply their trade with Swindon Town FCs Youth Academy in the United Kingdom. To achieve this, they need to be able to play in adverse weather conditions against bigger, stronger opposition, which is exactly what they experienced in Las Vegas. It was great learning experience.”

Coordinator of the PFL Youth Football Programme Neil Murray added, “The players, parents and coaches did a wonderful job in raising funds for this trip and we thank everyone who supported the fundraising raffle, car washes and fish fries. The PFL Youth Football Programme thanks all the companies who gave generously in supporting this trip and the Programme. It was a great experience for our youngsters and we hope to attend other overseas tournaments in the coming years as we continue to build on this Programme.”

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