As the Petition for referendum for One Man One Vote continues, Caymanians now know that they will go to the polls in July to decide if the three Islands will adopt single member constituencies. In contrast, Premier Bush’ and his UDP government will launch a campaign against the referendum. Caymanians can expect the premier to start traveling the country promoting his anti-Referendum Rule. All UDP views expressed will not be in agreement with the political ideology of the people’s initiated referendum now 3,000 voter signatures strong. It is quite disturbing that Mr. Bush has decided that this day should not be a holiday, as this would allow for mass voter turnout at the polls on July 18, twelve weeks from now.
There’s just one question, is this a political ploy to cut back on the number of signatures required for this referendum to pass legislation, what exactly are those questions that would be asked the voters? and the suspicion surrounding the timing of the Premier's designated date for this voting exercise by local constituents?
Without a public holiday, that could possibly influence or reduce the number of votes by decreasing the number of people at the polls from productive voting that would guarantee the Referendum passing legislation. This affects the working middle class who are the political decision makers and who would more than likely be on vacation with their families during mid July. You be the judge.
The compass stated that "According to Mr. Charles Glidden Press Secretary for the UDP he also stated that Referendum Day will not be a holiday. According to the Public Holidays Law [2007 Revision] schedule, public holidays shall include: “The day appointed under the Elections Law for the taking of the poll at a general election in the Islands.” Whether a referendum is legally considered a general election isn’t clear. The Public Holidays Law was written prior to the 2009 constitutional amendment that allowed for voter-initiated referendum.
Never mind the UDP campaign against the petition for referendum Caymanian voters and the opposition I’m sure will have an alternative to such gimmicks.
As Referendum day approaches on July 18th we must still live with the determination to change from the old system of voting producing home grown dictatorship governments to the new system of the people’s choice; One Man One Vote .
The Opposition Leader and the independent member for North Side and the East End Member of the PPM are to be commended for spearheading this petition for a referendum and we encourage them to remain sober and vigilant. Sober and vigilant in this important matter means nothing more and nothing less than tapping the governor on the shoulder to get his attention to do his part in the process.
This petition for one Man One Vote referendum is history in the making for these islands and the governor is not exempt but he also has a responsible role to play to ensure that the people of the Cayman Islands enjoy their democratic right to make the political decisions they themselves choose and are accommodated.
The governor should now seriously consider using his executive powers and declare Referendum Day July l8, 2012 a Public Holiday.
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