Rivers claims discrimination

| 10/09/2013

(CNS): The education and employment minister has taken aim at the local media after the coverageand backlash over her decision to go to the 59th Commonwealth Parliamentarians Conference (CPC) in Johannesburg. In a lengthy statement released from her ministry, Tara Rivers implied that the press was discriminating against her in what she described as “hasty and ill-informed” reports. She said that she was unable to respond to questions from the local paper due to time zone differences and had not received any from CNS, even though they were sent directly to the press secretary who responded on Friday. Rivers claimed that her travel plans were never hidden as they were published on social media.

However, press releases from the premier’s office regarding both the Legislative Assembly meeting and the swearing in of temporary ministers while Rivers and the finance minister Marco Archer were away from the island told a different story. One release indicated that Juliana O’Connor-Connolly was travelling to South Africa for the CPA meeting and would not preside over last week’s parliamentary meeting but made no mention that Rivers would be joining the delegation which also included the opposition leader, McKeeva Bush. In a second release Rivers was described by the premier’s press secretary as being on leave and there was no mention made that she was on official business in South Africa when Winston Connolly was sworn in as a temporary minister while she was away.

While she was at the CPA Rivers missed, among other things, the start of the school year, the Caymanians teachers’ induction and the arrival of the new governor. However, Rivers justified her trip and accused the media of sensationalizing the issue.

"It is unfortunate that what is considered normal and expected participation of parliamentarians at such important conferences, especially women parliamentarians whose participation is actively encouraged by the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (“CPA”), has been dealt with in this mannerby the local media,” she said in a statement stretching some four pages.

“The unfortunate coincidence and irony is that one of the main topics of discussion at the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians conference was the discriminatory way in which women parliamentarians are often treated by the media in their respective countries. Discrimination against women in any and all forms is unacceptable and should not be perpetuated in the media or otherwise," as she implied that the reporting of her travel was discriminatory.

The new PPM government has introduced a travel policy to curb unnecessary travel by politicians and civil servants and cut the costs when it is necessary as a result of the public backlash regarding travel under the UDP government. However, Rivers appeared not to see why there was public outcry regarding her decision to go to Africa.

Rivers said her plans were in plain view of the people, as “posted information about my whereabouts and activities on my social media pages,” she stated. “But what the local media needs to appreciate is that we are in a new era of government and now is not the time to be sensationalising issues that have very simple explanations. Responsible journalism and understanding of the negative consequences of hasty and ill-informed reporting is paramount to stability and good governance. To carry on in any other manner is not good for our country or the media in which it is reported,” she added as she pointed the finger at the press.

"I do not expect to be above questioning or even criticism by the press that is part and parcel of being an elected official. I do, however, expect to be treated equitably and with respect by the press. It's disappointing that there was more importance given to rolling out a salacious story before the weekend, fueled from a one sided, ill-informed perspective, than to reporting from a balanced and informed perspective, “Rivers continued in her attack.

“From the obvious haste in which the articles were put together and the unreasonable time frame requested for a response to questions received at the 11th hour, coupled with the content of the article and editorial, it is clear that the intention was to impart controversy at the expense of the truth,” she said pointing to coverage in the Caymanian Compass.

“I have received an outpouring of support and anger from so many of my constituents over the recent coverage. It is important that the media understands the affect they have on our society when they choose to make eye catching headlines without real substance,” she said.
Describing the coverage as a storm in a teacup Rivers said she was “diligently attending the conference and representing the Cayman Islands’ experience through her many contributions to the discussions” throughout the week she was in Johannesburg.

She added that it was “a positive and enlightening experience” which she said the country “will greatly benefit “from because of her more informed capacity as minister. Thanking the Cayman Islands branch of the CPA for giving her the chance to go and the premier for supporting her she said she looked forward to building upon the experience.

In the lengthy release Rivers said she was now better equipped to tackle the many issues and subject areas for which she has responsibility.

"Participating in the CPC was an absolutely worthwhile and directly beneficial experience,” said Minister Rivers. “Much of the plenary sessions and discussions I attended and in which I participated centred around the concerns of education, employment and gender affairs. These are areas of concern throughout the commonwealth, and the ability to share ideas and experiences as parliamentarians and the networking opportunities which facilitates further exchange of information was extremely helpful," she said.

The minister said she was able to discuss the issue and come away with some examples of concrete solutions being implemented in jurisdictions that are similar to Cayman all of which was valuable information which she said would help guide her in developing similar programmes for the local unemployed

Rivers said she has a strong history of attending overseas conferences and implementing solutions locally. "As a civil servant in the late 1990's, I attended a workshop facilitated by the Commonwealth Youth Programme, held in Dominica, which dealt with developing National Youth Policies,” she said. “As a result of attending that conference, and the information learned there, I was able to successfully spearhead the development of the first comprehensive National Youth Policy for the Cayman Islands.”

Rivers stated that as a minister she expected to operate no differently, as she signaled more potential travel on the public purse.

“My participation at overseas workshops and conferences aimed at parliamentarians and ministers will be used to help facilitate the development of policies and programmes locally. Our country is simply in no position to lose out by not being at the table," she added.

See the official release from the ministry in full below

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  1. Incredulousme says:

    I read the statement from the minister and do not see what the fuss is about.  It is the media in resoonse to the statement that seems unhinged and comes off as more self-righteously outraged IMHO.  Meows all around.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Tara must have known how contentious an issue frivolous travel was with the prior administration and particularly her travelling companions. The conspiracy claims was the defence they used also but with a sexist slant neither of them could really use. Boy was I a fool voting for her.

  3. Anonymous says:

    So her first few months is office consist of a court challenge, an overseas junket and then an 8 page letter about why criticising her is sexist. What a drama queen! How about just dong some goddamned work now, please.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Has there been any comment from the ministry's Mary?

  5. same do do different day says:

    geeze um piece! West Bay didn't change at all, they simply elected McKeeva Bush in a skirt! Only crap like this comes from West Bay. What is wrong with that district? they keep electing ego driven and self-serving characters, it's not like they did not have choice this go 'round!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Who needs the Queen when we have Her Royal HIghness Tara?

  7. Anonymous says:

    get a job….oh you have one so…….. how do you have time to write a four page reply…..if one of my employees did that on my time I would be angry. 

    • Biggles says:

      Time to go I think…Good Bye.

    • Anonymous says:

      I often write eight page replies to stuff. But my boss is a lazy sod so I guess I'm spared his anger. Life is so beautiful.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Legend in her own mind!!!     Same shit, same politics, different day!   Thank God for CNS that is all I can say.  Now that Jennifer Dilbert is leaving, only CNS left to keep them accountable.  I expected better from her AS an educated woman.   Oh well we live and learn, she will be a one-hit wonder….watch!!!!

  9. Anonymous says:

    I actually had high hopes for Tara not just because she is a woman but because I thought finally we are getting young, fresh, educated talent in office.  Wrong!!!  I am disappointed and I know sheis new and has a lot to learn but its obvious she is not what the people of WB thought they were getting in representation.  She has not learnt anything from past mistakes and seems to think because she is educated (unless alot of them) she is above everyone and the rules do not apply to her. I am not even sure if she should still be in office anyway since Richard Christain was not allowed to run on the same premise.  Not impressed with her actions but then to accuse CNS of being prejudice is so ridiculous.  Thank God for CNS at least we can depend on them for the truth and fairness.  So over "Miss attitude Tara".

  10. Anonymous says:

    It looks as though Tara called some friends and had them "Troll" everyone who criticised her. The result is very obvious. She is a loser.

  11. Anonymous says:

    It is obvious most posters here have not read your release even though its attached. What I see here is unfortunate gibberish against a educated young lady who undoubtedly took on a plateful from the last government. 

    Please let's give this government and Minister Tara some time to get this country going again. 90 % of the posts seem extremely childish. XXXX Please go do something useful for our country. 
    • Anonymous says:

      This is a very well put together letter and too damn long! Less said more heard. But the problem is, it is she, who is continuing to create her own problems. She needs to calm the XXXX down and stop talking so much and take time to LISTEN! Yeah hell we know she is smart, but she over does the ego! Huge turn off. Only great leaders know how to pick their battles wisely. And the goalith named media, is one to be carefully approached. David Legge and CNS should be applauded for seeking the truth for us all.

  12. Anonymous says:

    This woman is a disgrace to the country. She should resign immediately. The Compass editorial today says it all.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Could the Honourable Minister please show us the South African stamp in her Cayman Islands Passport? Just need to know that she only uses her US passport to go to the US like was suggested in Court. I look forward to eating my words, but doubt I will have to.

  14. 4Cayman says:

    So you travel half away around the world at the expense of the tax payers and we don't even have teachers or substitutes for our children? What type of minister are you? The way I see it, you are no different than mr. Mac.

    Man talk is so cheap!

    • Anonymous says:

      Today's Caymanian Compass has a very interesting and well written editorial regarding Ms Rivers statement.

      Worth a read.

    • Anonymous says:

      I noticed Tara's hair is looking much more healthy and better styled since she became a minister.

    • Anonymous says:

      No a Minister of Education does not deal with micro issues like filling vacant posts – even if urgent. 

      Matters like that are handled by 1. Recruitment Officers in the Department of Education 2. The Director of the Department of Education and 3. Chief Officer in the MInistry of Education

      • Anonymous says:

        You can bring it to the Minister's attention especially if the Minister is at the school or touring the school.  Sometimes, it's someone seeing the need that gets the ball rolling.

      • Anonymous says:

        don't you just love it when they quote rules and job descriptions, that serve no other purpose but to exclude one from the issue at hand?

  15. Jiggy Biggy says:

    We are witnessing one of the greatest implosions ever in the history of Caymanian politics.  I would humbly suggest that Tara turn in her spurs and ride that dead horse out of Dodge.

    Like it or not.

    Others have resisted pride.

    Do the right thing.

    Go with dignity.

    Everyone wins!

  16. anonymous says:

    This is exactly what they criticized McKeeva about.  Outlandishly expensive trips, with very little tangible return on the investment.  One would think someone so educated would learn from mistakes made in the past.  Are we destined to repeat the same pattern of waste?  


    • Anonymous says:

      Wait a minute. How do you know it was "outlandishly expensive"? or that there will be no tangible return on investment?  I don't see that there is any comparison to McKeeva galavanting around with his entourages to the every casino destination.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ever heard of an educated fool?

  17. Anonymous says:

    So the line about Tara being away was only an excuse to make Winchon a Minister!

    • Anonymous says:

      Who is Winchon? What has your comment to do with this story? Obviously Tara was away – that is the point of the article.   

  18. Precious says:

    What is it in the DNA of politicians that makes them all so very thin skinned?

    You are a public servant. That means you are open to public scrutiny.

    If you can't take a little heat, then don't sit in the hot seat!


  19. Anonymous says:

    the comments here are the closest thing we have to democratic free speech in cayman…..thank you cns

  20. Anonymous says:

    Just cry us a river (Ms. Rivers), cry us a river, we've cried a river over you (wasted too much time on you already). Work now!!!!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      "Lonely rivers flow, to the sea, to the sea…"

      "He hath been founded out upon the seas"

    • Anonymous says:

      I guess she is rightfully being Tar-red!! and feathered.

  21. Anonymous says:

    QUEEN Tara you are nothing but a DIVA who is totally out of touch with your fellow country men & women. Just read these comments and you will clear understand how unimpressed and disappointed we all are with your comments and you as a person. You are a niave junior first time minister who needs to get to work and show the country that you hold countryand its people first. The TARA show is over and we will not stand any more egomaniacs representing us in this country. Stop the embarrassment of the PPM and respect and be thankful for the honour you have been given in this country.

  22. Anonymous says:

    To be honest the whole CPC looks pretty dull and I can only see a couple of sessions that may have been of benefit.

    Looking at the cover of the schedule, the logo does not carry the Cayman Islands name in any case, where they not expecting us ? It's OK though, Tuvalu were expected……….and that's a country that apparently hosts the majority of the worlds premium rate chat telephone lines and very little else !


    • Anonymous says:

      Ok, ignoramus. You will not see Cayman's name (or the names of any other UK OTs) because we are not a member of the Commonwealth in our own right but simply as an OT of the UK. 

      Obviously the logo remains the same regardless of whether you are represented at the particular conference.  

      • Anonymous says:

        Ooh get you using big words!  Obviously the irony in my post was missed on you ….

        • Anonymous says:

          The irony that what you thought was a clever comment was in fact a stupid one? 

        • Anonymous says:

          First thing to do before claiming to use irony: look up its meaning.

          • Anonymous says:


            i·ro·ny   (r-n, r-)
            n. pl. i·ro·nies
            a. The use of words to express something different from and often opposite to their literal meaning.
            b. An expression or utterance marked by a deliberate contrast between apparent and intended meaning.
            c. A literary style employing such contrasts for humorous or rhetorical effect. See Synonyms at wit1.
            a. Incongruity between what might be expected and what actually occurs: "Hyde noted the irony of Ireland's copying the nation she most hated" (Richard Kain).
            b. An occurrence, result, or circumstance notable for such incongruity. See Usage Note at ironic.
            3. Dramatic irony.
            4. Socratic irony.
            [French ironie, from Old French, from Latin rna, from Greek eirneia, feigned ignorance, from eirn, dissembler, probably from eirein, to say; see wer-5 in Indo-European roots.]
            suit you ? 
      • SSM345 says:

        How do the Cayman Islands compete in the Commonwealth Games under our own flag then?

    • Anonymous says:

      It's not about the sessions, it's about the breakfast buffet and cocktail hour.

  23. The lone haranguer says:

    You are not going to win taking in the media, because they are the media, shut up and get to work.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Well govt, it has been 100 days of Tara’s dramas! And stay tune for more! We have heard more about her problems than a cathlic priiest at a confessional. When will we hear about what Govt has done to resolve our DESPERATE ISSUES AT HAND?? Enough media hogging and lets see more jobs for caymanians and our children educated by the finest. Cha man! Not even Mac was this vain in 84. PPM how fool do you feel now? So much for that olive branch huh?” But dat wha unna get bobo. Unna should have stick wid who unna know”.

  25. Porky Pig says:

    Unlike Whodatis, with whom I agree for once, I have read the letter – and all it says is boo hoo, boo hoo.  As far as I am concerned, any time you go to such great length(s) to justify anything, you have lost the argument long ago.  Fact of the matter is that government ought to have "explained" immediately where Ms. River was, in what capacity, etc.  The fact that they did not raised a lot of questions.  As for Ms. River's love of travel and conferences to "LEARN" (once again she is learning, not working) I would suggest to look up the following words:  1. telephone  2.  long distance calls  3.  conference calls  4.  video calls  Furthermore, if she truly wanted to learn, she ought to read up 1001 ways to save money by not travelling abroad, all summed up the following words:  Don't travel abroad!

  26. Anonymous says:

    In my humble opinion the press was a bit harsh before collecting the facts, and Ms River's reply was immature and out of proportion to the media's criticism. But putting everything in perspective: Given the past administration's utter lack of transparency and record of frivolous travel at the public's expense it is to be expected that the people and the media will demand accountability and timely information. This is a major reason why there was a change of government and why Ms Rivers is the first non-UDP candidate elected from West Bay in recent times. Who could argue that gender discrimination is a bad thing? But that is not the case in this instance. Ms Rivers is receiving exactly the same treatment that the two former Premieres experienced – one male and the other female. Ms Rivers is a politician and minister – and a freshman one at that – so learn from the wishes of the people and stop with the ranting excuses.

    • Anonymous says:

      And in my opinion Ms Rivers needs to get off her high horse!  Stay home and do your job instead of spending the kind of big bucks it takes to get to Africa and back.  Please do not try to blame the press because they were trying to find out where she was but were given no official reply.

    • Anonymous says:

      In my humble opinion, she needs to take some time to sort out her ministry and get some of those people there off their high horse and demand that they do their work!

  27. Anonymous says:

    Honestly, I think she is clueless. I do not think the lady have a clue to operate her ministry and was not the ideal candidate to be selected for the Education post.  Her actions makes Rollie looking  like a genius when he is not sober.    

  28. Anonymous says:

    Where is Tammie Chisholm the press secretary?

  29. Anonymous says:

    Take foot, aim, Fire! lol


  30. Anonymous says:

    This maybe the first public indication of Minister Rivers' attitude to her job, but over on the Brac we were made aware of it when she chose not to show up to the high school graduation in June and cancelled via text message to someone with precisely nothing to do with the education department at 3pm that afternoon, without even giving a reason. The writing was on the wall then…

  31. Voter says:

    They say "When you have a hammer everything looks like a nail."

    She just attended a conference on discrimination now everything that shows her in a bad light is labelled "discrimination".

    What a mess! The honeymoon is over… please get to work.

  32. Whodatis says:

    My concern over her SA trip had more to do with its timing.

    Considering the rocky start to her political career, which included a court trial and its necessary appearances, those distractions alone would be enough to complicate matters a bit.

    Add to that the fact that she is "fresh off the boat" in this political and ministerial game, plus the fact that the country has just undergone a change of government, plus the fact that the trip coincided with the start of a new school year against the backdrop of all of the above … her decision to attend a conference halfway around the world at such a time was a very, very poor one.

    (Upon reading the news of her attendance, I literally thought to myself; "Wait a minute, aren't we in August / September??")

    Regardless, in the midst of the "storm" over the past week I completely ignored the issue (not as if my opinion would make a difference anyway) and quietly crossed my fingers that everything would be okay.

    Lo and behold – we see what transpired this morning up in East End and what is reportedly unfolding with the other primary schools regarding after-school programs and movement of teachers within the education system. That was not a good look, not a good look at all.

    (Winston's call-in to Rooster was less than impressive and only served to demonstrate exactly how out of depth they both seem to be in their minister / councillor duties.)

    I want to like and support Tara, honestly I do, but so far she has made this a very difficult task – and this letter is really not aiding in that mission.

    Her decision to run in spite of her residency situation was already an eye-brow raiser for me (let's see how that appeal plays out) and this latest debacle is really not helping matters.

    Tara, you have achieved quite a feat in West Bay but have placed yourself in sticky situations time and again. My advice to you is to SLOW DOWN!!

    Keep your head down and shoulder to the wheel. You have been entrusted with major responsibilites for this country and I suggest you make them your prime and only concerns for the time being.

    Lastly, in respect to your claims of sex discrimination, which admittedly I have not verified for myself as I have not read your (alleged) 4-page letter, I say – "Woman up!!"

    This is politics Tara. E.g. Consider the history of accusations and negative media coverage of your greatest opponent in your jurisdiction … trust and believe, he is laughing his socks off at your little letter of complaint. Such a letter only serves to make its author appear weak.

    Personally, it is difficult to empathize with your situation because most of the struggles that you have encountered as of late have been self-inflicted.

    I wish you well for the future as the duties you have been entrusted with are of major concern to our people. Hopefully in time we will all look back at this and view it as the teething issues of an illustrous political career … and not evidence of yet another the run-of-the-mill politician who had to be rightly removed.

    It is all in your hands.

     – Whodatis

    • Anon says:

      Whodatis – I actually read your entire post on this issue.  Ident usually read your posts as they are too lengthy but this one is spot on!

    • Anon says:

      Whodatis – I actually read your entire post on this issue.  I don't usually read your posts as they are too lengthy but this one is spot on!

      • Whodatis says:


        Just gotta love those backhanded compliments, don't 'cha?!



        • Anonymous says:

          We luv ya sometimes….always entertaining:)

        • Anonymous says:

          Whodatis…will you at least tell me if you are a woman or a man?

          • Whodatis says:

            Hmmm, put it this way … Hermes was my single mother, Aphrodite's, baby-daddy.

            Who am I?


        • PA Rody says:

          I still don't understand why they couldn't find a suitable qualified Caymanian to do her job?

    • Anonymous says:

      i agree but i am not able to give whodatis a thumbs up…………..

      • Anonymous says:

        Oh, go on….try it for once, might make you feel good to be compassionate:)

      • Whodatis says:

        Don't stress yourself … Whodatis wouldn't want one from the likes of you.

  33. Anonymous says:

    Posting updates about her whereabouts on social media pages is a complete joke and taking the piss. Get out of here with such rubbish. Your excuses and press release are embarassing.

    • Anonymous says:

      Looks like a Connolly-Basdeo press script to me.

      • Anonymous says:

        @16:39 wow!! that was the first thing I thought, Conolly-Basdeo being helpful, or so she thought…..lmbo!!

      • Anonymous says:

        Sorry, who or what is a Connolly-Basdeo press script? I don't understand.

        • Anonymous says:

          I'm getting LOLs for this but I really do not know what a Connolly-Basdeo press script is.

  34. ah boy says:

    I bet alden kicking himself for not putting one of his own PPM people in that Ministry. Suckoo or Hew would have been way better choices.


    • Anonymous says:

      Why would they have been a better choice? You have a crystal ball and can predict how they would have acted or the competence they have?

  35. Anonymous says:

    It looks like we are in for an additional four year of overseas training for Ms. Rivers.

  36. Anonymous says:

    Tara it is not because you are a woman we are criticising you, it is because we are starting to see what you are really made of and we do not like what you see.  We would react the same to a man or a Martian that behaved with rampant zealous ambition like you do.

  37. Anonymous says:

    It is sad to see that Ms. Rivers is using the "discrimination against women" card so early in her political career. She needs to pull up her big boy pants and stop blaming the media for her own failures. It looks like the country is going to have to finance four years of overseas training for Ms. Rivers as she will need to travel to various destinations to acquire the skills needed to function in her role as a government minister.

  38. Anonymous says:

    Big up the 7 year physical residency requirement!

    That's right, reason for that Constitutional residency QUALIFICATION, is simply because we want our reps here and AWARE of the issues and not come here with all the novelty, acting like celebrities and divas! WTH, feeling so disappointed with the 44% of West Bayers who voted for her, or at least the 14% who put her over the threshold.

    Miss dem travelseh Hon. Minister? need to go a foreign is your ting? So understand, good for you, being MLA great job for dat. 


  39. Anonymous says:

    Oh please Court of Appeal save us from this self-publicizing harpy.

  40. Anonymous says:

    "and I see your true colours, shining thru…"

  41. Anonymous says:

    In her 4 page response, did she even say how she ended up on that trio when it was Winston that was selected to go? Maybe West Bayers just love to travel and blame the press.

    • Computers says:

      But it was on my SOCIAL MEDIA page?  so we are all supposed to follow twitter and FB your majesty?  Whoa. 

      I was happy to see fresh blood and newly elected faces, but man oh man, she learned from Big Mac how to snap back at the public and the press in just one week? 

      What a peice of work….speaking of work – WHEN you gonna sit your butt at the NWDA and Biz Staffing Board/ Immigration Dept instead of jet-set to conferences to better yourself?  It ain't about YOU, it is about US and the JOBS you promised that would no longer automatically be approved (permits).  While you were away, at least a DOZEN middle-management positions for work permit renewals were posted in the newspapers….So where are you and Winston on these??? (silence….too busy booking next trip…)

  42. Translator says:

    > “The unfortunate coincidence and irony is that one of the main topics of discussion at the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians conference was the discriminatory way in which women parliamentarians are often treated by the media in their respective countries. Discrimination against women in any and all forms is unacceptable and should not be perpetuated in the media or otherwise," as she implied that the reporting of her travel was discriminatory.


    In other words… "I hope unna trip and pop ya mout".

  43. Anonymous says:

    yet another own goal by rivers…. i feel sorry for C4C for backing her….

    • Anonymous says:

      Mrs Rivers, more and more I see your true colours coming true just like I said when you were running for office.  You just need to shut up and do your job.  I bet Alden is so sorry he asked you to join the PPM .  Get a job Mrs Rivers or work for us Caymanians.  Or maybe use your USA passport and go to the USA

  44. Anonymous says:

    PPM and C4C rubbish again. UDP deja vu . Cayman please remember not to vote for smooth talking lawyers, especially ones who juggle passports and calls work as 'education'. Uphold of appeal coming soon to that atrocious decision which allows you to be where you are Tara.

    Any politician – especially the lawyers – and there are a few in this lot , who thinks that that they can talk their way out of any trouble is wrong. If you are insincere we can instinctly make out – such is human nature. Tara, you are buried under Alden politics – another smart ,smooth talking , insincere politician. Wake up and redeem yourself. Cayman demand more of these public'servants'- they chose to be there, applied for the job and are getting paid by us.

    • Anonymous says:

      Tara is C4C, not PPM.

      • Anonymous says:

        Collective responsibility in a PPM government 

        • Anonymous says:

          You obviously don't understand the concept. It means each Minister is bound by Cabinet decisions whether they individually supported them or not, and has nothing to do with the PPM being branded by Tara's actions here.   

  45. Anonymous says:

    Unable to respond because of time zones?  What utter rubbish. Isnt it odd that she accuses the media of discrimination sensationalising etc without substantiation yet she fails to substantiate

    Her presence unless the words 'importance' and 'worthwhile' are meant to qualify her.  Sorry ms rivers you are a disappointment to me and not worth my vote. 

    • Hear Hear says:

      Hear hear and Har-Har!  Tara, most of us in the legal &  financial world work 365 days a year 24/7 without "communication problems" with Hong Kong, UK, California.  Your LIES of saying you were no where near a computer are a simple INSULT to our intelligence.

      Before you get all high and mighty and take on the press, you had better look inside and decide what kind of politician that you want to be…. You go with the party and ego or you humbly serve the public.  I'm afraid so far we have only seen the first.  Check yourself girl, you are a hot mess.

  46. Anonymous says:

    Complete and utter bollocks! Declaring a war on the media and failing to take responsibility for her actions is just silly. PPM really?

  47. V. says:

    Way-to-go Tara!  Just because you lash out against the media, they will brand you too and make false reports against you. Watch and see. Some of the journalist here are very cunning.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah, let's criticize the CNS newswomen for discriminating against the lady politician. BTW, is she back yet?

  48. Anonymous says:

    Tara, ignore these ignorant posts below. The press did make too much of it….I mean the Compass ran one or two headlines!! Crazy!!

    Go represent us when needed. Keep up the good work.

  49. Knot S Smart says:

    Good God! How long did it take to write that press release?

    She could have just said that Mac was teaching her how to travel in style…

  50. Knot S Smart says:

    Good God! How long did it take to write that press release?

    She could have just said that Mac was teaching her how to travel in style…

  51. Anonymous says:

    Tara Rivers is possibly finished as a credible representative of the Cayman Islands. She was too big for her boots and Alden was fool enough to fall for it.

    For heaven's sake, a first time politico in charge of Education AND Employment! This is a recipe for disaster.

    Ms Rivers, I suggest you roll your sleeves up, ditch the invisible handlers and get to work for the people that hired you to represent them.

  52. Anonymous says:

    Stop being a diva this is pure arrogance and a complete lack of humility. Who does she think she is and needs to remember she answers to the people.

  53. Anonymous says:

    Yes Tara. It's the media's fault…

    Are you serious?

  54. This is the reality says:

    I completely agree with Tara, and if some of you think a bit harder, you will too.

    I made some of the same points on the CNS article posted the other day. It is clear now that CNS aspires to the role vacated by Cayman Net News – that of creating controversy to fuel readership, without a thought to the actual consequences. In that goal, they will find a willing (but differently motivated) partner in the Compass, the purchase of which was quite probably funded by someone who is politically opposed to the new government.

    Tara's message, if you read between the lines, is this: 'you told us you wanted a better country, but you are already trying to scandalise, and thereby weaken, the most capable people who have been in charge of it in recent memory, on spurious grounds. Who is the real wolf in sheep's clothing? Who really lacks principles?'

    Travel stories are obviously good for readership because times are hard so people will be jealous of anyone who is getting to go away at someone else's expense (much less the expense of the 'taxpayers' of Cayman, which by the way are businesses). That is all that is behind the CNS policy of "reporting on all travel". The people behind CNS didn't get into this industry when they moved here, you know. It is a business.

    Tara has the highest profile of all ministers because of the petition, so they will ruin her first, ensuring maximum revenues during the government term. Same reason the petition was filed in the first place. The Hewitts' didn't have to win, they just had to keep Tara in the news long enough to make sure the new government had a visible target from the start, maximising their chances of retaking government in 2017. Simple.

    These are the dark arts of journalism and politics, and the reasons why politicians who genuinely want to do good usually hate the press. Any protestations to the contrary from any of the media houses should be disregarded as 'what they would say', and have no credibility, apparent or otherwise.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ridiculous. She should be back here taking care of those big portfolios.

      • This is the reality says:

        Where is she supposed to get the ideas for how to change the problems those portfolios have presided over? By sitting around talking to the people in the portfolios? Come on. You read (from the brevity of your post) like you are probably an intelligent person. Think about what you are saying. We need new ideas, and new ideas come from other places.

        • Anonymous says:

          How about she ask Cayman Prep and St. Ignatius how they do it twice as well at half the cost?

  55. Anonymous says:

    The people of our country do disappoint me. Elected MP goes to a worldwide political event to get ideas to better our country – let's get the pitchforks out and go on a witch hunt.

    Then on the other hand let's complain that there's been no change in 100 days of being in parliament – let's get the pitchforks out and go on a witch hunt.

    Damned if you do, damned if you don't. We need to get real people, do you honestly think that more developed countries don't expect their politicians to go travelling? It's a fricking business they're running here, go network, make connections, seek opportunities and borrow ideas.

    Let's focus on the things we can control, such as building a better, more inclusive community to bring people together. Guess what, we might even lower crime at the same time!!??

    And no, I am no relation to Tara or the PPM!



  56. Anonymous says:

    Wow I thought she would be a great addition to the LA. Didn't expect to be proven wrong so quickly.

    She did not need to go on that trip. She knows it and we know it. There were important things to be done here and she needed to put her head down and get to work before jumping on any planes.

    Then to come out swinging and claim she is 100% right and anyone who criticizes her is being sexist?  Is that what she is going to say every time some one is critical of her?

    Not impressed.

  57. Anonymous says:

    ZZZZZZZZ would this lady just be quite what a mistake was made in West Bay on 22 May!!  Sorry for all them that had put their hopes in her!!

  58. Anonymous says:

    Sensationalist! She has no right to request the news outlets not to sensationalise things she does. They can sensationalise whatever they like. She should consider herself lucky that the local media doesn't include any of the following: –




    and straight forward political analyists, comedians, satirists, bloggers (whatever happened to Cayblogger) and straight forward comentators, like CNN, BBC and others who like to use their right to free speech for their own purposes, often mirth.

    Oh Tara, you poor sensitive (to your own perceived defamation and injustice), and equally insensitive (to the view of the vast majority of your voting public, non-voting public, residents and anyone eyeing Cayman, including investors) little thing. There there. It'll all be alright.

    It will all go away when the press gets bored, or some one else does something stupid, inappropriate, or which otherwise justified news coverage. The best way to ensure that is to do the obviously right thing (not fly to Africa).

    It does beg the question why she bothered to put herelf forward for government (free trips to Africa maybe?) and also how she plans on spending her next four years in power (abusing it I should think)?

    The more you protest, the more closely you will be watched in future.

    Plus try and realise, the more stupidly you behave and the more you react to critisism, instead of taking on board the comments, or even God forbid, apologise, the more you will be taunted, hounded and should be made fun of.

  59. Anonymous says:

    No they don't. This not a national security meeting. The national security issue is back at home being ignored.

  60. Anonymous says:

    I'm not sure why Cayman adopts this "i need to know where you going before you go policy"  Your Ministers are considered Diplomats and there wherebouts I dont think should be known before hand. It can be known when they return or when they have reached their desination. This can be for security puposes etc.  They need a little privacy.

    • Anonymous says:

      “My participation at overseas workshops and conferences aimed at parliamentarians and ministers will be used to help facilitate the development of policies and programmes locally. Our country is simply in no position to lose out by not being at the table,"  Oh really?!! This claim can be made by those before you minister Rivers, and look at the wonderful mess we are in now!! Perhaps the PPM wanted you out of the way while dealing with the issue of job security for those currently up for role-over, I don't know. But I know this, if it take you going to conferences to do what is right for CAYMANIANS, you sure didn't make that kown while on the campaign trail. During election you knew what the issue were, and still is, but now you seemed to have suffered the usual memory loss that so many others in your presense have suffered. Keep it up, four years is shorter than you think.

      • This is the reality says:

        Tara is not McKeeva. One of the tasks the government has is to appear at as many functions as possible, to show that there are credible, rational, presentable people in charge of the Cayman Islands again. That's how we are going to get back all the respect, investment and co-operation that McKeeva lost. With the improvements to policy deliverance and the civil service being worked on, once the ministers have decided the policies, they will not need to be physically around all the time to carry them out. They'll be out and about, here or off-island, gathering information, meeting with people, thinking of the future. That's how it works in every other country. Next question.

    • Anonymous says:

      Funniest ting I have read in a long time.  They are Ministers – they are not Diplomats!! They need a little privacy????????? LMAO


    • Anonymous says:

      Most people would have agreed with you had it not been for the 2million dollar Mac travelling Casino vacation circus we all had to pay for….Now we need to know how our politicians are spending our money.

    • Anonymous says:

      Have you not been around for the past several years when Mac and others were constantly travelling with little or no results for Cayman? Were you not around when he was photographed stepping off private planes? How quickly we forget?

    • Anonymous says:

      11.56-it is all about openess and transparency. if they have to tell people where they are going before they go, they will think a lot longer and harder about whether it can be justified. If they only tell when they come back, they will find some poor excuse.

      Not sure Tara understands she is a politician now and she has to understand she will come under scrutiny and some crticism. However, she is not stupid andIi hope a lesson is learned, because she got this wrong. Get your press sorted out before you go Tara, and you will not have any issues. On this one, even if you intent was honorable, you screwed it up, let it go and learn something. Do it again and you will lose many voters support.

    • Anonymous says:

      I think the public needs to know where our Cabinet Ministes/Member of Legislative Assembly visit on behalf of Government as they are in the employ of the public. However, in stating that, I must agree with the Hon Ms. Rivers as the newspaper made a front page story on it as well as an editorial which I think was unwarranted. When McKeeva was de facto dictator of Cayman, he would travel to many places and no announcement was made about it unless one read or heard of him making a specific pronouncement at the country to whom he travelled. The Compass never made any issue about that as they are obviously pro-McKeeva and the UDP in my opinion.

  61. Anon says:

    SOCIAL MEDIA??!! Just in case you're not aware, Ms Rivers, not everyone is on social media – i assume you're speaking of facebook, twitter, and all the other communication means which a lot of people do not participate in. Some of us still rely on the news media which you are blasting.  

    I find  it difficult to get my head around your taking the time to produce such a response to the local media, but there is complete and utter silence from you, as Minister of Labour, regarding the discussions and concerns surrounding the recently proposed changes to the immigration law and the TLEPs. Your running mate in West Bay is certainly concerned about this. Everyone seems to be, except you!

    i am a West Bay voter and I am most disappointed. 

    • Anonymous says:

      Agree.  Whether somebody is on social media or not, a Minister's social media is not the place to announce official government business.  Are we seeing already the all too familiar mighty attitude, of 'untouchable' emerging, having won the passport issue. 

  62. Castor says:

    Oh Boy, here we go. I personally think her correct regarding the press and the ill informed, ignorant comments that will ensue from this. That said, one needs to pick their battles, this one she didn't need to win as it would have gone away next week only to be replaced with some other real or perceived misuse of privilege. She has virtually declared war on the press.  I suspect she has unleashed the dogs now. This woman could walk on water and the press will vilify her every chance they get. That said, it's a double edge sword. Ms Rivers had every right to attend the Parlimentary ASsociation meetings as she is a Minister of the Crown. I am more interested in the appeal and how the Chief Justice's liberal (very liberal) interpretation of the Constitution will be ruled on. It's going to be very interesting. 

  63. Anonymous says:

    "The lady doth protest too much, methinks".

  64. Anonymous says:

    Oh oh… Has she lost the plot? She managed to sneak three  lines of useful information into four pages! 

    1/ yes I went, it was a good thing, will tell you about it. 

    2/ I told my mates and one was covering for me. 

    3/ not sure why you think it was a secret, will try and get better lines of communication open 


    • Anonymous says:

      I don't want to be a judge and decide which travel is necessary and which is not, however, I think the general public would be less bothered with the travel if the Government and elcted MLAs in general would address also matters on the homefront.

      We need to hear the plans to reduce crime & unemployment, to increase our tourism and finance product, to get cost of living under control and what the hell is going on with immigration.

      So far the general public has only heard about some trips taken, and that the same old self serving people were re-elected to various boards………..

      Whilst the press does at times scandalizing matters (which is something most press generally does), the Government and the MLAs have not done much to messages out to the public, and show that they are making good on their campaign promises. For example, what what is going on with the District Councils which were promised?

      • Anonymous says:

        I fully agree with you, but would ask, how well does your business function during summer? Does decision-making and communication suffer a bit? So it suffers in government. That's one reason why we used to have elections in November.

  65. Anonymous says:

    What a pile of self serving horse manure from Ms Rivers, all seeking to justify foreign freebies. I'm very disappointed in her. 

  66. Anonymous says:

    Oh yeah, welcome to being a Caymanian and experiencing unfair discrimination….you gave up a passport or wha'? just wondering

  67. Anonymous says:

    Really Hon Rivers? Discrimination, unfair I guess? It's called being in the public eye, being a politicians, not giving info to public until public questions so left public to question NOT discriminate 'unfairly', welcome to the world of politics….where were you when they did it to Mr. Bush and his entourage? oh, you were in training as a lawyer all over the world.

    But Lord help us, if WB voters give you support out of sympathy while we continue to watch nothing gets done in Education and Labour, except for employing PPM and C4C supporters (even if they're qualified, makes people consider nepotism & cronyism at work). 

    WB please stop votong for drama and opportunitsts!

    God knows Mervin and Paul working hard, and not sure if that is to make Hon Rivers/C4C look good, can't cnvince me Bobo…what a mess here in paradise!!

    The public can only go by what is provided, and the government (if they knew) could have stated you were also going to SA when Mr Connolly was sworn-in, instead it was stated that you and Mr Archer were going on vacation for 2 weeks.

    If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen my dear…just saying

    BUT do hope you manage to start working soon, the photo ops, hiring friends, and trips, enough already and too much for first 100 days.

  68. Anonymous says:

    It is everyone else's fault but mine. Perfect replacement for Mac.

  69. Anonymous says:

    Her claiming that this is a useful trip gives me perspective on what she thinks is important. Unfortunately, I conclude that she thinks her contact list is the important thing. Gotta plan for the future I guess.