Connolly leaves PPM government

| 18/01/2016 | 82 Comments
Cayman News Service

Winston Connolly, Fifth Elected Member for George Town

(CNS): George Town MLA and education ministry councillor, Winston Connolly, has left the government just over a week after he said he had no immediate plans to quit. In the latest political blow to the PPM administration, Connolly’s move has cut government’s majority to just one on the Legislative Assembly floor. In a statement to the media Monday afternoon Connolly said he “would better serve” his constituents and the country if he was not a councillor. He also said he would no longer caucus with the Progressives and he had realized he was not a politician.

“I’m a just an ordinary Caymanian who serves his community as a member of the Legislative Assembly. Nothing more,” he said in the statement. Connolly did not pinpoint what had triggered the decision to leave his job in the education ministry, where he worked alongside his political Coalition for Cayman (C4C) colleague, Minister Tara Rivers, but he said people needed to come before party and politics. He spoke about the need to ensure opportunities for young Caymanians but did not say if a specific issue or action by government had given him cause for concern.

“People need to come ahead of parties. People need to come ahead of politics. I am here to serve the people, not the parties,” he said in the written statement. “Going forward as an Independent I feel I will be in a better position to raise the pressing and important issues facing our Beloved Cayman Islands. I will support the Government in whatever I believe is in the best interest of these Islands and my people. I am here to be a voice for the people and I will be an independent voice, standing firmly in opposition to any proposals that go against their best interests.”

His exit from the government benches is the third in two months. Veteran politician and founding PPM member Anthony Eden left in November over the government’s decision to allow same-sex spouses to be dependents on work permits to avoid falling foul the Bill of Rights. Eden said he would serve out the rest of this term as an independent on the opposition benches. Then at the beginning of the year Alva Suckoo also announced that he was leaving the PPM and crossing the floor to also serve as an independent.

Connolly, who ran as an independent C4C candidate, said he was elected by the people of George Town to provide them with good and honest representation.

“Over the past three years I have made every effort to work closely with the Progressives led coalition Government in the best interests of my constituents” he said, something that he clearly feels is no longer the case.

Although Connolly’s move has cut the government’s majority to the bone, leaving Premier Alden McLaughlin with nine members on the government benches plus the speaker, Julianna O’Connor Connolly, it could make things very awkward over the next 13 months for the PPM administration.

However, an early election might not serve the political interests of those MLAs who have opted to resign from the PPM because the government has not yet passed the one man, one vote, single member constituency law, meaning that forcing the government into an early election would see the next election conducted under the old multi-member system.

In a brief response Monday evening to CNS enquiries, the premier was clearly surprised by Connolly’s move and unaware he was leaving the government before the press statement was released.

“Winston and I had  four separate talks and I thought we had agreed a way forward. Especially so after his public statement that he would remain with the government,” Alden McLaughlin said. “He sent me a message asking for us to meet later in the week but he never indicated he was leaving prior to his press statement.”

Connolly sticking with government

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Category: Elections, Politics

Comments (82)

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  1. Rp says:

    Ppm doesn’t seem to have it together.

    So Juju quits ppm and new govt formed just like last time?

  2. Anonymous says:

    pol·i·ti·cian
    ˌpäləˈtiSHən/
    noun
    noun: politician; plural noun: politicians
    a person who is professionally involved in politics, especially as a holder of or a candidate for an elected office.
    synonyms: legislator, elected official, statesman, stateswoman, public servant; senator, congressman, congresswoman;
    informalpolitico, pol
    “campaigning politicians make more promises than they can keep”
    US
    a person who acts in a manipulative and devious way, typically to gain advancement within an organization.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Little too late to realized that you were a part of nothing that happen for the country. What a waste of pay, the country need a refund from you and Tara

  4. Simplicity says:

    Winston, it took you three years to realise that you are not a politician? How do you propose to serve the needs of your constituency, without the other politicians in power? How do you propose to get funding for community projects? How do you propose to influence policy? You need the help of other politicians in power, be it independents or party based. That means that you need to exit completely?

    Another question for you is, would you quit your current role at this at this time, if Mr. Alden and Suckoo did not resign from the current government? Would you have the guts to be the lone man standing at this point?

    I think you need to come clean on this because you are not. If you are leaving because elections is looming that’s understandable. If you are leaving because of disagreements with the current government or leadership style then say so. Start there for the sake of your constituents. Because you are being seen as a follower. Stand firm!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      He just realized he knows nothing about education nor has he bothered to take the time to find out or get briefed etc.

  5. Anonymous says:

    The title of this article is misleading. The present government is a PPM-led coalition Government. Winston never joined the PPM party, only joined the Government side of the bench in the legislative assembly as an independent.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Winston … another one hit wonder! I for one can’t wait for the next election.

  7. Just UK Driftwood says:

    I thought being a member of parliament came with bring a politician elected to represent your people.
    So Mr connolly does not wish to have the responsibility of being a politician then best he leaves politics and his fat salary and finds another job.
    The term flipflop love it so apt

  8. Anonymous says:

    Winston Connolly knows the truth. Winston Connolly knows the whereabouts of darth vader. he has kept his affiliation with the empire secret for many years and he is afraid of it coming to light. he is responsible for what he believes was the fall of the Jedi. But we have risen once again. And with the help of district 13 we will conquer. The Mocking jay lives.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Party politics in Cayman does NOT work! It brings more issues for the people of the Cayman Islands rather than solutions.

    The Cayman Government (just as THIEFA) should be torn back down and build back from scratch! And that includes MANY high flying civil servants who are a waste of space.

  10. ALL SEEING EYE says:

    “There are none so deaf as those that will not hear. None so blind as those that will not see.”

  11. Anonymous says:

    I will only VOTE if we legalize GANJA by next election lol so I can say Bob thing Excuse me while I light my spliff..If GAYS are LEGAL GANJA should be LEGAL too..

  12. Anonymous says:

    Well you can go tell the WORLD I VOTED for the last time in GEORGE TOWN CAYMAN ISLANDS and I got 4 right now eligible and of age to vote in next election I have already advise them don’t get registered its a waste of time..As you cannot TRUST NO ONE ANYMORE…

  13. Anonymous says:

    It does seem Alden has a real problem with failing to see who his friends are, and treating people like crap.

  14. Anonymous says:

    I am not a politician, as my incompetent posturing and flip-flopping of the last few weeks has shown.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Roy must be shaking in his boots right now…talk about jumping aboard a sinking ship..wonder what promises Alden gave him to keep him..Obviously any chance of a cabinet seat in next government is out the door…Alden himself probably won’t get elected much less be in a position to promise anything…but then again what the lodge demands they must both do..

  16. Anonymous says:

    To be very honest, I have lost faith in the party I have long supported. If the people that make up the party can’t see that clear change is needed in the leadership and a new path set for the PPM before the ship completely sinks we are going to be in some serious trouble, not only because we will no longer have the majority in the house but come next election, we will have a tough time winning any seats..If Alden is a true leader, he should now call the party together, resign and let us elect a new leader so that we can have the confidence to know that our party will survive and we will have a chance in the next election.

    • Anonymous says:

      So, party over national issues, eh? – This is why Party Politics is bad. the mistake that the party is more important than the rest of the electorate who the MLAs should also represent. – Hopefully next time I’ll have good options that aren’t party-people, then we can both be happy.

  17. Anonymous says:

    This is what happens when you elect a bunch of novic
    es, Winston and Al are doing the same thing that Franklin Smith did in 1988.Some think. it is easy to be an MLA then get elected and discover otherwise. Do they realize how unstable this makes our Islands Government look.

    • Anonymous says:

      Obviously you’d rather keep the old entrenched corrupt politicians .

    • Anonymous says:

      Who cares how unstable the government looks at this stage. Most real Caymanians are so sick and tired of the PPM and the Civil Service that many of us would prefer to see the government collapse and the country run by the BRITS since so many are in Bed with them. We can’t then have a new start.

      • Anonymous says:

        Being run by the Brits would be a huge step up. We might get proper education systems, health systems, policing, politicians, civil service, transparency and accountability. Some of you wouldn’t understand what that means.

      • Anonymous says:

        @ 1:42pm,Of course you are one of those Brits who wants it all. You are already running things that is why things are in such a mess If anyone is in doubt just look at who runs Accounting firms, Banks and Trust Companies, Law firms.etc.In other words look at who controls the money.More importantly look who sits in the Governors chair. If that is not enough for you,put this in your pipe and smoke it Our mother country who should be protecting us from others ,is herself leading those trying to destroy us ,by destroying our financial industry.If that is what you are selling, I ain’t buying. NO to the BRITS being elected to our Legislative Assembly.

  18. olivia says:

    Very smart move , the premier should resign immediately. Mr mclaughlin this is for you, have compliance officers do random checks at places of employments and speak to us caymanian , have immigration enforcement officers check places of employment . sitting in your office and speaking about unemployment is not going to change the situation, I can gurantee you , if you don’t change the immigration laws and enforce them , you will not win the next election.

    • Anonymous says:

      They do not want the unemployment solved nor do they want the Labour Law complied with. These laws are only for some people. Your suggestion is a good one but the powers that be will not permit the officers to do this as it will show up the protected ones. This is one of the reason that one of the Labour Officers has been out of office on required leave for so long

  19. GT Voter says:

    Dear PPM

    Another one bites the dust. Don’t stop the progress

  20. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Connolly is most disingenious. He says he is not a politician but he is as mendacious as most of them. Why bother with those protestations last week? What was the point? How did those stories make him look other than fickle?

    • Jotnar says:

      Not often you see “mendacious” in a CNS post. Kudos.

    • Jotnar says:

      So what you have to ask yourself is, after all the explanations, the arguments that the CIG were not dealing with unemployment correctly, but then declining leadership of the task force to deal with it, the stepping down to join the opposition to better represent your constituents, whilst rendering yourself completely powerless to do so, and claiming not to be a politician whilst taking $150K of the public’s money to be one AND planning to stand again, would you buy a used car from this man?

  21. Anonymous says:

    Very smart move Winston. I didn’t expect anything less from you. You are a man after my own heart as it is obvious that you are a man of principal, one who cannot be bought or sold. It takes a man with courage to do what you did especially being a Lodge Brother with those guys. I am extremely proud of you. I knew you are too strong a man to be part of the corruption that exist at that level, which include some of the most Senior Civil Servants. I am praying hard that the next election will find some of those corrupted ones pulling bush. I and many others are calling on the Speaker of the Assembly to resign from the PPM as well. She is a Christian woman with moral and ethical principals. It is perfectly okay for her to remain as Speaker but she should resign from the PPM party. If not, the country will view you as a supportive member of their Ungodly behavior. The city is about to be visited by the Angels of God and you need to get out and don’t look back. There should be nothing between your soul and the savior Ms. Julie Honorable Speaker. Those of us who are God fearing Christians like yourself is calling on you to stand like a brave. We all know that you will be victimized for it but remember that the spotless lamb of God was victimized for standing up against the influential kings and Leaders of his time. It’s your time to take a stand. May God give you the strength to do what is right.

    • Anonymous says:

      A prime example of why politics and religion must be separated-you get even more idiots than usual running the place.

  22. WaYaSay says:

    Congratulations Winston, I do hope that as a George Town constituant I will get the chance to vote for you in the next election.

    2017 is looking better as each day passes as it truly my fervent prayer that enough Independant thinking people, who value the Caymanian people over party, will get elected to a majority in the House to form the next Government.

    My message to the 5 Independent Members now in the house is for you to get together, show the Country you are capable of coalesing as a group and be Statesmen and rid the Country of McKeeva Bush as the idiot leader of the opposition.

    Mr. Bush is an embarrasment to the Cayman Islands in ANY capacity and he does not deserve to be the Leader of the Opposition with that nincompoop Bernie Bush and that sleepy head- do nothing-say nothing Eugene Ebanks.

    Please get together and get it done; we do not need to live that embarrasment until May 2017.

    Once again Winston congratulations, we love you even more now that you choose to stand on your own two feet.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Does he not understand the definition of politician? He’s gone from having an executive position in government to being, strictly speaking, purely a politician. Methinks he meant he’s no longer going to participate in party politics, but maybe he should think a little bit before he opens his mouth.
    And ironically he can now do less for his constituents than he could in his previous position.
    Just say what you mean – you no longer wish to be associated with the PPM, long enough before the next election that, like Alva, you can hope to be distanced enough in time to try and diminish the nearly three years you worked with them, just in case your potential voters don’t like the PPM. When you try to make lame excuses to seem noble and unmotivated by “politics,” you just end up sounding like an idiot.

  24. Smoke 'em if ya got' em says:

    Noooo!

    This is disappointing, Winston. Just 11 days ago I had this to say:

    _____________________________
    07/01/2016 at 4:26 am
    “Now this is a man of Real integrity! Absolutely refreshing to read his comments and forward thinking. Well done, sir. Well done.

    You are now my #1 vote come election time. Stay your course and hold your head up high. You’re doing good, my friend.”
    _____________________________

    Well you did not stay your course and I’m now believing something else is amiss. I hope it’s not true or even half true of what’s being said on the Marl Road and elsewhere about your real objectives and motivations. ? – Please, please be good and honest. We need it. Do not let some power lead to more power which becomes absolute.

    Well, I guess after reading this news, I’ll need to go smoke something a little stronger.

    “So they [the Government] go on in strange paradox, decided only to be undecided, resolved to be irresolute, adamant for drift, solid for fluidity, all-powerful to be impotent”. – Winston Churchill

  25. Anonymous says:

    Big Mac lost his position as Premier due to the UK.

    Alden will lose the position as Premier because of Alden and his own poor leadership

  26. Anonymous says:

    I was a supporter but serving the people seemed very exclusive to multiple generational Caymanians particularly in law industry….farewell to you and your agenda.

  27. Anonymous says:

    In out in out shake it all about. Positioning and posturing, no real answers.

  28. Hail de Man says:

    Wow, oh what a rat rAce poliTriks Rat race.

  29. Anonymous says:

    He ran as an independent and so did Tara, yet the back flipped and went with PPM, both of them should be gone. No backbone whatsoever on both of them If you run independent and get voted in as independent how do you change parties??? I voted for Tara as an independent and what does she do after she was voted in she changed to PPM. This isn’t right, for the people of Cayman voted these people Winston included as an independent not PPM, if they ran PPM it may have turned out alot different.

  30. Anonymous says:

    Bear in mind that both Alden and Winston are masons, anyone that feels it’s necessary to publicly declare they are ordinary clearly is not. One can only imagine the Faustian bargain these two fine upstanding gentlemen have come up with to preserve their seats in the assembly and keep the wool pulled over the real ordinary people’s eyes.

  31. Anonymous says:

    Something must have upset him recently because evrrything was cool just a week ago

  32. Anonymous says:

    Another gains sense finally. Leave the regressives they are lost and not for caymanians. Lets ho tara be a true leader and leave as well this the best move you can make.

  33. Anonymous says:

    spineless flip flopper…who obviously enjoys keeping his head down and collecting a fat pay cheque every month without any responsibility….

    • Philip says:

      Bit of a silly statement considiring what he gave up in order to run for a seat.

      • Bob says:

        Ohh…but there is a lot more “bargains” in gowernment Philip …lots more 😉 lots of pretty contracts – everyone knows that so don’t waste ur time trying to let people think otherwise. “You can fool some people some time but you can’t fool all the people all the time ” (**music**)

  34. Anonymous says:

    Let’s all celebrate….. Party tonight

  35. Anonymous says:

    Ouch!

  36. Anonymous says:

    If any PPM members want to be re-elected in the next election it is imperative that they finalize OMOV ASAP. If they do not they are all dead in the water.

  37. Anonymous says:

    I don’t really care either way what any of these guys do, as long as doesn’t increase the chance of a certain famous, clever, operator from West Bay to slip back in as premier.

  38. Anonymous says:

    One more, one more we need one more to finally bury the PPM. Feeling excited

    • Jotnar says:

      First, one more does not give the opposition a majority. Second, you are assuming that everyone in the opposition will vote together.

    • Anonymous says:

      I am just as excited as you are if not more excited. I can’t wait to see Alden fall flat on his face because he is useless and does not have Caymanians at heart. He needs to go to East End and plant pumpkins.

    • Rp says:

      Juju seems to like to play only on the winning team! My gut feel is that she’ll follow very quickly.

  39. Anonymous says:

    Maybe there is an honorable person but there must be an end game.

  40. Anonymous says:

    Winston, i cant believe you stayed this long. everything you did was shot down and proves ppm was using you for a number. i hope you will continue to put your motions forward and get the respect you deserve.

  41. Pi$$ Poor Management says:

    3 members of the government bench have now left the PPM all for the same reasons. The leadership style, lack of respect and arrogance of Premier Alden McLaughlin yet they still can’t figure out what the problem really is. SMH

  42. Anonymous says:

    Hear Hear! Finally and hurrah. People NOT parties. A voice of wisdom has arisen from the sheep of Eastern Caribbean corrupt crony politricks

    • Anonymous says:

      The PPM really need to take a serious look at their leadership styles. In the recent past they have lost Arden, Chuckie, Alfonso, Anthony, Al and Winston. It is my personal opinion that party politics were created for soulless , thoughtless people and not independent thinkers, created by persons with a control- freak personality who loves to get a bunch of people together and force them to ” do it my way” with no input or questions” independent thinkers need collaboration and not control. To all the XPPMers, continue to do your best to help your fellowmen and do not be perturbed by all the rhetoric and bad mouthing. “Show up, pay attention, pick and speak your words with truth and do no be attached to the outcome”.

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