Speaker recognized for service to CPA

| 10/09/2013

(CNS): Juliana O'Connor-Connolly, the speaker of the Legislative Assembly, received a plaque in recognition of her service to the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) in South Africa last week at its 59th conference in Johannesburg as she ended her term as an Executive Committee member for the Caribbean. However, the delegation to Johannesburg, which included Education Minister Tara Rivers and Opposition Leader McKeeva Bush caused controversy in Cayman in the midst of a clamp down on government travel. Although O’Connor-Connolly’s trip was covered by the CPA, the airfares for both Bush and Rivers came out of the local branch of the CPA’s budget, which is funded by the tax-payer.

Having been distracted from her ministerial post for several weeks as a result of the courtroom battle following an unsuccessful petition challenging her election to office, Rivers came in for particular criticism from the public for attending the conference at a pressing time for her ministry, with high unemployment and the start of the school year.

Nevertheless, O’Connor-Connolly, who returned to the island earlier and in time for the governor's swearing in, defended Rivers' attendance at the conference. The theme was "Effective Solutions to Commonwealth Developmental Challenges" and included sub-conferences for delegates from countries and territories with a population of less than 500,000 and a conference for Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians. It also included a meeting of the CWP group to elect a new Chairperson to serve for the 2013-2016 period.

One of the mandates adopted by the CPA and its various branches, including the Cayman Islands, is increasing women's participation and representation in the political process, withan aim of achieving 30% representation by women in the parliaments of each Commonwealth member country by 2015.

"The involvement of women parliamentarians is vital to the aims and goals of the CPA, and member branches are encouraged to send as many women parliamentarians to the conferences as possible,” said O'Connor-Connolly. “Minister Rivers, being the only women in Cabinet, was initially asked to attend the regional conference held earlier this year in July, but was unable to do so at that time. She was, however, able to participate at the annual conference in Johannesburg and I am delighted that she was able to attend. She made many poignant contributions and a very favourable impression on many of the other delegates in attendance," the speaker added as she offered her support to the minister’s participation.

Rivers, who released a lengthy statement Tuesday morning said it was "a very enlightening and beneficial experience", which was relevant to her ministerial duties.

The Cayman Islands Branch of the CPA typically sends two delegates — one member of the opposition and one member of government — to each of the CPA conferences in which the Cayman Islands are invited to attend.

Related article on CNS:


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Category: Politics

About the Author ()

Comments (34)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. anon. says:

    " She made many poignant contributions…" Really? I suspect JuJu meant pertinent, but hey, they both start with a "p". 

    Interestingly, one definisiotn of poignant is " evoking a keen sense of sadness or regret", so if Tara was speaking about the inclusion of BigMac and JuJu on the trip, maybe she did mean poignant after all!

  2. Anonymous says:

    What little this woman has done during her political career that is truly of value to Cayman, is dwarfed by what she has taken out.  

  3. Anonymous says:

    An embarrassing delegation at best. These stooges are what the world think cayman is all about. And what the hell happened with C4C. Roy I used only two of my WB votes for your candidates not because of their merits but because of yours.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Congratulations Julie. At least you got something.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Anyone seen my mop?

  6. Anonymous says:

    CNS, could you please use that picture of her on that steam roller as the stock photo whenever you run a story on her?  Thank you. 

  7. Anonymous says:

    Anything for Paul?

    • Anonymous says:

      Didn't he already get an award for Heroes Day, or Long Suffering Service, or something like that?

      My question is what was he doing there in the first place? Was he on 'Official Duty' representing the Government too? Was he on vacation leave and paid his own way? If JuJu was at the conference all day, why the need for a driver?



      • Anonymous says:

        We cannot afford waste or excess any more.

        The Slightest hint of any uselessness being detected, then use the mechanisms in place and get them out of there without any delay.



  8. Eat Chicken! says:

    Haaa haaa – Tara's first feast at the pork-barrel buffet was led by Big Mac, the poster boy for ripping off taxpayers, and the only man who has more outstanding charges on his rap sheet than he had on his government credit card!!  We know now what she's made of.  Tara, we really do know now.

  9. Muchas Gracias Senor says:

    Leave them alone because the C4C have destroyed their credibilty following Barabus and Zacheus down memory lane! All start to off the deep end when they gave beloved here speaker

  10. Anonymous says:

    Whenever this woman speaks I just want to react in a manner I cannot type, as CNS would not post it!!! Just utter disgust and no respect I hold for people who live under such false pretense.

  11. Anonymous says:

    So this increases my view that Tara's junket was entirely pointless.

  12. Anonymous says:

    It is very amusing how Tara Rivers is quite comfortable to miss these useless CPA meetings when she has some personal irons in the fire, however, when the only thing she has on her plate is to represent the people who elected her and is paying her salary, she feels that it is of paramount importance, to travel to South Africa, to council with the leaders of Jersey Channel Islands to hear what they have to say about unemployment. I hope they at heast told her that their unemployment is at an all time high (2% compared to Ms. Tara Rivers 8%) and that they were only able to find employment for 200 in one year through their "emergency put Jersey people back to work program" (go ahead, google Jersey unemployment). Dog eat our supper if this is the best use of her time that Ms Rivers can come up with and even worse if she is going to follow advice from Jersey…….all while missing the opening day for school…….

  13. Knot S Smart says:

    For a moment there I was thinking that they had bestowed upon her a CPA as in Certified Public Accountant…

    Well. Somebody was buying a Doctorate for Mac last year – so anything is possible…

  14. Anonymous says:

    Love the rug!

  15. Anonymous says:


    • Jack Sparrow says:

      Did Paul the driver get an award for loyal service since he was also in South Africa with JuJu and Tara?

      I swear the stuff that goes on with politicians in Cayman make a mockery of us all.

      $ame $hit different government.

      • Anonymous says:

        I just cant believe that Paul is still travelling with ju ju. Can some one enlighten me as to whom is paying for his trips?

  16. Anonymous says:

    I'll bet the jungle safari and cage diving with great whites was a very "enlightening and beneficial experience." 


  17. L.L. Kool Aid says:

    A plaque! So proud of them.

  18. pmilburn says:

    wow Scary.

  19. William Wallace says:

    What a shame! I am so disgusted that people are being nominated big accolades to do their jobs  and not such of a good job! 

    What examples have Ms. Ju Ju set for our young ones? She knows exactly what I'm writing  about.


    • SSM345 says:

      20:04, I know a couple of things she has taught everyone………how to drive a steamroller over asphalt and how to pray.

      • Anonymous says:

        Oh, you for got another thing that she taught us. To be disrespectful by not turning up to functions on time.Oh and it would be awful not to mention our dress code with our glasses worn un a top of we heads.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Jesus wept.

    • Anonymous says:

      I am weeping.

    • Anne T. says:

      If he did, and he probably did a few times based on the story of his life, that would have been a couple thousand years ago (as in, before he died).  That guy and Ju-Ju have nothing to do with each other.  Speaking of Ju-Ju, being forced to wear that ridiculous hat-wig-carpet isn't sufficient punishment for the evils she has visited upon us, but it's a start.  Tar and feathers would be a good addition.

      • Anonymous says:

        Don't you mean Tara and feathers?

      • A Pastafarian says:

        WHAT??   Before He died???   You mean He's dead???

        • Anonymous says:

          Ummmm…His death (and resurrection) are kind of like the basis of the Christian faith. That news is 2,000 years old.