McLeans faced-off in first chamber forum

| 09/04/2013

mcleans.jpg(CNS): The two East End McLeans, Arden and John Jr, launched the Chamber of Commerce political forums on Monday night with a head-to-head debate that demonstrated some significant differences between the two candidates on topical issues, such as the ForCayman Investment Alliance, how to tackle Caymans growing immigration dilemmas and the country’s voting system. The younger of the two McLeans seemed to be on the wrong side of the argument over one man, one vote in the district, while his opponent seemed to have the support of the district when he revealed his intention to abolish the work-permit boards and create a separate labour agency if he was a member of government after the election.

John McLean Jr revealed that, despite being a candidate in one of only two single member constituencies, he had voted against one man, one vote, as he said he thought it would create enclaves of foreign voters as more people from overseas got Caymanian status.

However, only 79 people in East End voted ‘No’ in the summer referendum while 297 had voted ‘Yes’, reflecting the position of the electorate on that issue where the inequality of votes in this election will be particularly hard felt. With only one vote compared to the six held by each voter in the capital,  Arden said it was unequal and unfair. While his constituents still paid the same taxes as people living in George Town, they had six times less influence on government.

The men both answered well over thirty questions in a tightly managed debate. Disagreeing over the relocation of the landfill, which was supported by John McLean and opposed by Arden McLean, the men also differed over the West Bay Road closure. Arden pointed to the need for two roads into West Bay and the need to renegotiate the deal and the closure.

Asked about the constitution, John McLean said he was not in favour of the bill of rights and anything that was not in line with the Bible should be changed, while Arden, who was part of the team that negotiated the constitution, pointed out a number of things that may need to be changed now that the document was in use, including the need for a simple majority and not a two thirds majority to remove a an incumbent, given what had happened last year.

The candidates did, however, agree that the district councils set up under the constitution should be democratically elected and not appointed by government, as the law which was passed by the former UDP administration calls for.

They also agreed that politicians facing criminal charges should use their own moral compass and not run. And although both of the McLeans are associated with parties while running on an independent ticket, they both defended their independence.

The next forum which takes place Tuesday 9 April in Bodden Town but it will be more like a free campaign meeting for the PPM than a debate. Although 13 candidates are running in the district, only Al Suckoo and Wayne Panton, both from the Progressives, are scheduled for tonight’s forum as all of the other candidates have opted to attend one of the other scheduled forms. Nevertheless, despite the likelihood of agreement between the twonewcomers to the political scene, the Chamber is promising some tough questions for the Bodden Town hopefuls.

As well as being broadcast on Radio Cayman, the Chamber is also posting the audio of forums to allow people to listen again or catch up if they missed the event and find out where the candidates stand on the main issues of the day and what they plan to do about them if elected.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    The Bible/Torah/Koran has no place in civil law.  On that mere fact alone he should not garner a single vote.  

  2. Anonymous says:

    Just something that I've been thinking about a lot lately…why do we still have politicians running for certain districts?? It doesn't seem to make sense to me UNTIL Election time. I think there needs to be some changes made where that, and OMOV is concerned. In case you are asking why I think it should be changed, when they are in the house I don't hear of their constituents, and the matters of that district. It's usually something that sounds like this "hee haw. heeeee hawww". Ezzard for example, he doesn't only engage in NS related issues; and I'd vote for him if I could- but I'm a GT voter 🙁

  3. to be or not to be says:

    When Arden first started into politics he was just like johnny couldn't really answer any questions he had people in the back ground giving him the answers he was not a very outspoken person until later in the years, XXXX


    while it may be true that Johnny at this moment resides with his mother, so what.  i know for a fact that he is building his own house, better man than him still sleep at their moms house and i must say reading the news every day some politicians are charged with various criminal offences and still are running the country. 


    i have seen Johnny taking time and speaking to the kids, he even goes out of his way and assist them in their resumes, he even makes that call around and see if he can get them a part-time job, he even encourages them to go to college, Johnny may not be a loud mouth but i see the goodness in him by his actions. He takes the time to speak to everyone and he listens, while he may not get everything done to please everyone Arden could not do the same either.


    i must say that what Arden did at that meeting was a low blow when he resorted to attack the man's personal life by saying that at least he had a house and Johnny did not (i guess he didn't have anything else to say), XXXX.  i really don't care if Johnny lives with his mom.  i want actions if you say it, then do it. 


    i want to see those kids in EE doing better in school, have talks with parents on these issues, clamp down on the drugs in the district, harass the police to get their butts in EE for patrol checks. Develope EE so that business may come up that way.  i am thankful that our forefathers have some what made a way for us but we need to keep up with the current times.  don't worry i asked these questions at the meeting Arden did not even responded, Johnny answered them. 


    either way be smart, learn to listen, hear if these discussions benifit your family and if it is best for your district.  don't really need a loud mouth that only shakes hands with the weak and crackheads.  

    • Anonymous says:

      1. Arden was never as clueless as Johnnie and was always aware of the issues. Johnnie has had 4 years since the last election, when he also ran for office, to familiarise himself with the issues and to think through his positions but we are still only hearing parroted phrases. It appears that still has not read the constitution. He does not have an independent mind and would be an obvious candidate for manipulation and control.

      2. Actually it was Johnnie who started the personal attacks. Didn't he hear that people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones?   What you do in your personal life matters because it reflects your character. If you are unstable in your personal life you will be an unstable representative. If you are unable to manage your personal affairs you will not be able to manage the country's affairs. When you are faced with tough decisions, when you are presented with temptation to put your interests above the interests of the country, it is your character, not the high sounding speeches you gave when you were campaigning, that will determine the outcome.  

      Arden is all about action. That is why he is still the Action Man!   

  4. Anonymous says:

    Has John McLean Jr. got around to reading the Constitution yet?  When he ran in 2009, he admitted that he hadn't even bothered to read the document, despite the massive effort the government of the day put forth to educate the public before the elections.  Vote smart East End, I believe you have a great representative in Mr. Arden McLean.  While it has been difficult for him to get money for improvements in East End under the devil that is McKeeva Bush, I believe that a new government made up of reasonable, educated and non-corrupt individuals working together will benefit the island as a whole, not just the districts of one or two.  The last thing this country needs is yet another aspiring lifetime politician collecting a big salary for doing nothing, like the one we have here in West Bay. 

  5. Peanuts says:

    East End, only Arden will do, of the two. The Man has the experience and integrity, his move this time will be to groom someone to put forward in 2017. My vote is Arden.


    • Anonymous says:

      "not in favour of the bill of rights and anything that was not in line with the Bible should be changed"

      With these kind of thoughts, EE, or better yet the entire island better hope they get Arden to represent them again.

      Talk about backwards!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Does McClean have no concept of world history? Taking away people rights and thrusting down biblical concepts on all is possibly the stupidest thing I have ever heard.

      Making the biblical concepts into law has happended already and it created something called war.

    • Anonymous says:

      this wasn't much of a face off! Poor Johnny just doesn't have it. As I listened to him respond I could only shake my head and wonder if he knew what he was doing when he was convinced to run against Arden.

      Johnny does not have what it take to represent East End or the Island. He is still stuck in this 1985 belief that "District issues" will get you voted in. He reminds me of the very new Minister from BT, who is very much in over his head.

      Arden may not be the perfect person, then again who is, but he is a FAR cry away from Johnny, whom I am afraid to say isn't ready for this.

      All Johnny could talk about with any convistion is that he lives in the district. Big deal, doesn't mean crap. BT got plenty in the district but cant find them half the time.

      I for one, will be voting Arden this time.

    • Anonymous says:

      Was I correct in what I heard at the forum?! Johhny lives at home with his mother?

      Congradulations, you are the first person I know who is a grandfather that lives with his mother!!

      No, you are so not responsible enough for this job. Sorry.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Mr Arden. I have a serious concern, and I would like to hear your take on this as i know you are a capable man, as well as Mr. Ezzard.. But sir, hear is my question. With the ever increasing concern about North Korea. What woild be the effect to our island if WW3 was to break out? We have no current local government. And i am concerned because, who will lead us if the war does happen? Could it mean that any now ex leader could gain control sincecurrent government is now dissolved? Would it mean the only directives would come from England? Would there be problems with shipments from overseas? Collapasing of banks? Or even our new campaigners being given leadership roles similar to that of an elected official without going to ballot? etc.. I hope this theory remains fictional, however with the newscasts blaring headlines hourly of this imminent situation, it just begs to wonder what game plan is in place.The sad thing about asking this question, is that we are now living in a realty where we are truly hearing people shout about nuking the world! So yeah, I think this question is worth asking. If anything, it’ll give a peace of mind to get anyone’s take on this. I also pray we aren’t left with no help or Caymanian leadership in between election. We already are suffering with enough devastation. Peace and God is what we need, oh and some good strong leaders. Cayman pray, as these are some serious times.

    • Anonymous says:

      I really wish some of you would just rest the "prayer" thing, as we all know, everyone of us grew up going to Sunday School, Church etc. and people have been praying for decades, now does prayer really make things any better? hasthings gotten any better from praying? – take note of this – two hands working can achieve more than a million clasped in prayer – in other words, action speaks louder than whispers – get out there and do whatever it is you are praying for to happen. kmt sick of hearing it really.

    • Anonymous says:

      Those are not real questions. I think you believe you are funny. 

    • Anonymous says:

      You need some help from a Doctor, not from Arden….

    • Anonymous says:

      You twit.  Government is not dissolved.  The legislative assembly is dissolved.  Ministers and the Premier still retain their current positions until the elections.  

  7. Anonymous says:

    Thanks tothe Chamber for organizing these important forums and for allowing the general public to ask questions on subjects they believe are important.

  8. CayStudent says:

    I have my spiritual beliefs, but even I don't agree with having a more Christian-law system, Mr. Mclean Jr.  This is the twenty-first century, and if you take a hard look… the countries which are secular are either developed countries or countries which are facing progression in social cohesion and economic growth. 


    We need to allow companies the chance to opt for Sunday trading. Establishments should be allowedto operate on Saturday's beyond midnight. Public schools should teach religious education, but never enforce or promote it. Religion and politics aren't synergetic. 


    I attend a Christian school, Cayman Prep, and if I went to a state-school and I was in a environment in which one religion is promoted and I do not adhere to it, I would feel like there could be a religious divide between student and faculty. Maybe this isn't happening right now in our public schools, but as Cayman develops and becomes even more globalised, over generations we will see these social issues flying about.


    CayStudent – 17 – I welcome all forms of criticism as I benefit from hearing multiple perspectives.