Chuckie throws his hat in ring for Bodden Town fight

| 25/03/2013

(P12_0944 copy (209x300).jpgCNS): Former PPM cabinet minister Charles Clifford has finally declared his intention to run for office for the third time in Bodden Town. Clifford was elected in the district in 2009 with the PPM, when he polled 53.47% of the vote and served in the 2005-2009 Cabinet. However, he was one of the party’s casualties when he lost his seat in 2009, coming in fifth with just 33.11% of the vote behind his then party colleague Osbourne Bodden. Clifford has said he would be running as an independent candidate, hoping to be part of a government with other independents, but the former tourism minister did not state which candidates he was hoping to join forces with. Clifford told CNS that he has not yet decided if he will be seeking C4C endorsement.

In a press statement released on Sunday night, just a few days ahead of Nomination Day, Clifford, who was recently called to the Cayman Bar and started his own law firm, said he hoped to be elected with a group of like-minded candidates.

“I will be endorsing and associating with other candidates in the upcoming campaign and I hope to be elected along with enough of them to form the next government,” he said in a press release announcing his candidacy. Clifford said that he planned to meet with the Coalition for Cayman this week but he intended to work with various independents and he would talk more about that in the coming days.

He dismissed the party rhetoric that independents cannot form a government, noting that political parties only came into being in a real way in 2001 and for the 40 plus years before that there were loose affiliations and independents that formed every government.

Clifford was part of the PPM after he resigned from his post as permanent secretary in the tourism ministry when McKeeva Bush was at the helm. A controversial figure, Clifford was the subject of an enquiry by Sir Richard Tucharles_clifford (1).jpgcker after he was accused of taking government papers without authority when he left the civil service. The documents in question raised questions over the then UDP administration’s handling of the financing and management issues surrounding of the Royal Watler Port, Cayman Airways, Turtle Farm and the Boggy Sands road project.

The enquiry focused on the removal of the papers rather than the questions they raised about the government at the time, which he said sent the wrong message about whistle-blowing. Clifford was one of the first public figures to speak directly about what he called “institutionalized corruption” in government and he will also be campaigning on a platform of cleaning house.

Although running as an independent, Clifford said he was proud of the work that had been accomplished when he was a member of the PPM administration, which has helped to address issues of good governance.

“I was proud to be a member of the Cabinet which delivered the Freedom of Information Law, the Anti-Corruption Law and the Standards in Public Life Commission to our country. The unfortunate era of political corruption is being brought to an end and it is time for us to move on united as a people and free from the divisiveness of party politics to address the multitude of very serious challenges facing our beloved Cayman Islands,” he said.

Clifford left the Peoples Progressive Movement in 2010 following a fallout with the leadership over what he claimed was their failure to support him on a protest march against the UDP government’s plans to sell the Government Administration Building and changes to the immigration policy.

As with a number of proposals that were floated by the former premier, the idea was dropped.

Since then, local political experts were expecting Clifford to form a new political party. However, the former minister appears to be going it alone and hoping to join forces with others. At this point there are only two other independent candidates running in Bodden Town. The UDP is fielding two candidates in the district and the former UDP incumbents are also running with a team of three, while the PPM is running a full slate of four candidates.

Clifford acknowledged that he was part of the system but now believes the country made a fundamental mistake by adopted party politics.

“I know that there are some very good people in the political parties but it is the system and political culture that comes with it that is the problem,” he said. “If we don’t rid ourselves of this model of party politics then our beloved Cayman Islands will forever be ruined and each of us had better be prepared to look our children and grandchildren in their eyes and accept responsibility for being the generation that failed our country.”

As one of the leaders of the Coalition to Keep Bodden Town Dump Free, along with Gregg Anderson, who is also running in the district and still hoping for C4C endorsement, Clifford opposes the relocation of the landfill to Bodden Town.

““I know that the people of George Town need relief from the problem but I also know from my service in Cabinet that the problem can be remedied right where it is in order to provide that relief to the people of George Town without placing the burden on the Bodden Town community,” he said.

Outlining some of the policies he would support if elected, Clifford has not said who else he wants his supporters to vote for in the district of Bodden Town or which candidates he would work with if he is elected to deliver on hiscampaign promises. He is predicting a coalition government with a Cabinet that offers the best talent from the independent representatives and the political parties.

“This is the only hope we have of our elected representatives working together in a real way and demonstrating that this is a much better way to govern a country than the current party system which we have in Cayman. We must begin to dismantle this model of party politics through the ballot box in May 2013,” he added as he asked the people to vote for him.

See full press release below.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    You ever wanted to vote for somebody but just could’t get over that gut feeling that the individual just can’t be trusted?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Don't expect a Civil Servant to fix the Civil Service. Chuckie is all talk and little or no action. Last time around, he loaded his Boards with unqualified friends and let them do whatever they wanted.

  3. Anonymous says:

    He better dont bother run with Gregg Anderson! Oh gosh…

  4. Anonymous says:

    Now at least Bodden Town has one candidate that has competence AND integrity. Because the rest only have at most one of those two things. And I am amazed at how many commenters like dredging up the commission of enquiry thing as though it is some valid blight on Chuckie. Maybe you ought to pause and recollect who instigated that – McKeeva – and why he did it. Because Chuckie exposed him XXXX, long before anybody had the balls to say it publically. And maybe while you are at it, think about this: now that we have FOI legislation, thanks to the Cabinet that Chuckie was part of, every member of the public has access to that information which he was accused of disclosing to us, the people that elected him back then. And ask yourself if he is someone who appears to be flip-flopping or posturing on important issues or hitching himself to an established party just to get elected. And BTW, he also has previous relevant experience as an MLA and a member of Cabinet and has a law degree (which helps when you're in the business of law-making). Maybe you all should think about these things before you go shooting down the only solid candidate Bodden Town has right now.

    • Kmanlady says:

      I agree with you.  He is Bodden Town only hope right now… So I beg all of you Bodden Towners who are really interest in seeing a change in our Government and no dump in Bodden Town, VOTE for chuckie. He will carry us forward with integreity and Honesty…at least he will work for his salary….

      All I can hear from the other want-to-be policitians are they will provide  Jobs and Educate our people…NEWs FLASH want-a-be-politicians… we are educated…we just need the jobs..I keep hearing what you all are going to do…what I need to hear HOW are you going to do it….

      Here is what I would do:

      1) Cut back on Government spending.

      2) All government consulation should be done by the local experts as we are the only ones who can provide accurated information pertaining to these Islands .

      3) Change the immigrations laws and inforce such law and they are to work hand in hand with the labor office. No permit should be approve by immigration without it been signed off by the Labor board.

      Remove the immigration Dept as a revenue source.

      4) Introduce the minimum wage NOW…to CI$8.00 – CI$10.00 per hour.

      5) Give ALL Caymanians a chance after all it was them that made this Island what it is now, a beautiful, safe and properous place for all to enjoy today.

      Chuckie for Bodden Town everyone…


  5. Anonymous says:

    Chuckie, really???

    Where are all the good men and women in bodden Town..We used to lead the nation but now we look we might as well dress up any broomstick and ask it to run..

    Come On Bodden Town…We can do better!!

  6. Anonymous says:

    You got my vote, the only MLA with b$&@)s. he predicted everything that would happen and no one listened.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I I feel bad for you all in BT, not a lot to chose from up there! Joke joke= john john, marck, cow cock man=ozi, none Caymanian supporter=wayne panton!

    Gt voter

    • Anonymous says:

      I feel bad too for us Bodden Towners…Great that Chuckie is now a Candidate… a little light is now shining through for us…VOTE Chuckie…..

  8. Last of the Sea Urchin says:

    Chuckie it’s about time. You have my vote as independent however if you align yourself to C$C I will be very disappointed.

    Lets see what happens to the UDP now!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Charles Clifford has my vote ! Who will the other 3 go to ? That is the question.

    • Anonymous says:

      I stand to be corrected…it will not be a spoilt ballet if you only cast onevote…

      Correction please if I am wrong!!!!


      • Anonymous says:

        I don't think it would be a "spoiled" Ballot, BUT;

        what it will do is, whoever you do not like at all, will need one less vote to win!

        So do what so many of us had to do many times: cast your vote for the candidates you dislike least and hope you have helped avert a disaster!

        Hope that helps

  10. SOS,.com says:

    Ya runnin ya sey!?

    Ooooh boiye, I knew this day would come.

    Aiyeeeee….only some of the people can be fooled some of the time.


  11. Anonymous says:

    Bodden Town we got 2 good people now, Errington Webster and Charles Clifford. Vote smart and dont bother with the party politics. Charles, just one thing, I don’t think you should bother with the C4C, it will not do you any benefit in Bodden Town, stick by yourself but still work with everyone just like Webster.

    • Lori Buchanan says:

      Join no party Chuckie !!! We want unity amongst all not devise ness and hatred.

    • Dred says:

      Well let me say this. We need someone like Chuckle who stands up for what he believes even if it goes against party lines.

      Mr Webster is an unknown commodity with no experience. Thats not saying he’s a bad choice just unknown. Is he shadow UDP OR PPM?

    • Anonymous says:

      Well I dunno about everything else you said but I agree with voting for Mr. Webster

    • Anonymous says:

      Wow, I guess the C4C didn’t like that comment! Lol!

    • Dred says:

      Well let me say this. We need someone like Chuckle who stands up for what he believes even if it goes against party lines.

      Mr Webster is an unknown commodity with no experience. Thats not saying he’s a bad choice just unknown. Is he shadow UDP OR PPM?

      • Webster? says:

        Webster came to my house the other day and told me to vote for him, Mark, John John and Richard. He is not getting my vote and neither will those 3. I am voting a straight 4 for the PPM.


        • Kmanlady says:

          Is this true????????????????????? if is unblievable??????????????????????

    • Anonymous says:

      Who is the Webster guy? never heard of him.

      • Lori Buchanan says:

        Never heard of him is a plus and carries admiration these days. It’s about time we seek aspiring politicians with integrity honesty and respectfulness to replace the set that is in there.
        BTW: Talk about experience. Well lets simply say a qualified Caymanian like myself with a masters degree could not possibly be so high on the corporate ladder had it not been for me taking the initiative to obtain the necessary experience that would accelerate my progress. You see my dear friend experience you get on the job and once learned the sky’s the limit. Your point is therefore invalid.

      • Anonymous says:

        I wish I had never heard of Ellio.

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree Chuckie sitck by yourself…work with Webster…


  12. Anonymous says:

    Chuckie?? What a joke!!

  13. Anonymous says:

    This is the man !!!. He told us what was coming last time and that we had to be careful not to send our country down the road of the Turks and Caicos Islands. Things are coming to past……….its time to repair Cayman's reputation by electing the right people……honest people who are proven leaders. Charles is one such person and he has my vote !

    • Anonymous says:

      Do you not remember this XXXX when he was Director of Tourism? Do you remember the damage he done? Do you forget he wanted to build an island in GT harbor for the containers?rs? Do you remember how he pissed off the cruise lines? Do you forget the arrogance, that this supercilious egomaniac floated around on when he got the Minister title? Do you remember the documents he stole?  How easy you forget BT. You have an unenviable record of putting forward disasterous candidates so please for Cayman's sake try to get it right this time.  

      • Anonymous says:

        Actually it s WB that has had a record of putting forward disastrous candidates for the past 29 years.

        Chuckie was never Director of Tourism.

        Chuckie did not steal any documents. He released docs in his possession as permanent secretary to the media in an effort to expose corruption. If we had listened to him we would not be in the problem we are now.

  14. Anonymous says:

    WOW how the mighty have fallen, from 2nd elected in BT, Former PPM Cabinet Minister to Kent McTaggart's substitute….what a waste of time…but great to see the C$C team out in support early for you, but you going to need more than the six of them to win in BT. GOOD LUCK CHUCK…LMBO….I can’t watch.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Really???…man we will never ever get change if we keep putting on the same old dirty clothes we had on yesterday..

    Does anyone really think Chuckie has changed? 

  16. Anonymous says:

    Yes yes yes !!! Way to go Charles Clifford. Honest, experienced and fearless leadership !!! Thanks Bro. I’ll be there for you.

    • Anonymous says:

      I'll be supportingMr. Clifford also.

      Never did understand the foolishness of an enquiry in to him (as the whistle blower) rather than in to Mac. Now years later we have paid many many millions because of not investigating the real corruption…

  17. Anonymous says:

    Thank you Jesus ! I was hoping and praying that Mr. Clifford would run. Party politics is not good for such a small country like ours. It has divided families, nationalities, churches and community groups and service clubs. It was be brought to an end. Mr. Clifford will get one of my votes in BT.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Well Chuckie the PPM Bloggers have started. But we know you're a veteran and you can handle it. Keep ya chin up Bro. You got my family's support…….and we aint no small family.

  19. Anonymous says:

    I'm not sure who else I'm going to vote for but the Chuckster has my first vote !

  20. Anonymous says:

    Thank you Charles Clifford ! We were waiting for you. Things looking up now in BT !!!

    The UDP and UDPLite must go.

  21. Groan says:

    This man is simply an opportunist. Why not simply throw his support behind the PPM? Why become a spoiler and help the UDP stay in power? Charles as a veteran you should know better. How much time will the people get from you ? Didnt you just open a new Law Firm ? Wont that take up most of your time now ? Are you doing this because the C4C are desperate having lost Kent?  Come on Charles, do whats best for Cayman not whats best for you!

    PPM has 4 excellent candidates, throw your support behind them and stop the foolishness. If you could not make up your mind until this late stage I dare say you are not really comitted and at this time we need representatives who will give 100% of their time. 


    • Anonymous says:

      C4C PROPAGANDA 2 in westbay + CG and Rollie. 6 in GT (they have decided they are not running against Stephan). 1 in Borden Town plus the 3 UDP rejects and that's your team.  Not a good start from C$C deceiving the people. With smoke and mirrors.