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Premier pulls lawyers law as time runs out

| 28/03/2017 | 32 Comments

(CNS): With so much controversy still surrounding the Legal Practitioners Bill, despite efforts by government to seek agreement with the opposition benches, the premier pulled the proposed bill Monday, the last sitting of the Legislative Assembly before it is dissolved by the governor today, Tuesday 28 March, in preparation for the 2017 General Election campaign. Alden McLaughlin told his colleagues yesterday that it was not a good idea to deal with the committee stage amendments with so little time for such an important piece of legislation.

The bill has caused enormous conflict in the LA, with the opposition also divided in their objections to it. McLaughlin said that because of the need to get the law right ahead of the Financial Action Task Force review later this year and the need to properly regulate the profession, it would be the first item on the agenda for his government if the PPM is returned after the 24 May election.

During the proceedings, Winston Connolly revealed that he had written a long letter to the governor about discrimination in the legal profession and the need to address it, noting allegations that law firms were breaking the existing law and the immigration law in their deliberate marginalizing and stifling of Caymanians in the profession.

The lawyers bill was not the only casualty of the tight timeline; the supplementary appropriations bills, which have been through two readings, were also pulled by Finance Minister Marco Archer because there was no time to deal with the financial committee stage, where members scrutinize the reasons for the changes in government spending. Archer said that those bills would also need to be dealt with immediately after the elections.

The governor is expected to formally prorogue this Legislative Assembly today ahead of Nomination Day on Wednesday, when all candidates for the May election will need to declare their intentions and the seats that they intend to contests in Cayman’s first ever election under the system of ‘one man, one vote’ in single-member constituencies.

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Category: Government Finance, Laws, Politics

Comments (32)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Coward=not leader




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  2. Anonymous says:

    Oh goodness, after the election they might end up passing something even more pathetic to prop up with wages of those that can’t make it on ability.




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    • Anonymous says:

      How about something fair to our jurisdiction? How about people like you don’t behave like leeches sucking the country dry!




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      • Anonymous says:

        5.04, that comment shows how little you understand…these “leeches” as you describe bring in millions from other countries which get spent here and create employment as well as taxes/fees. On the other hand people with no proper qualifications, little skill or will to work or entitled feelings think they “deserve” to leech off those that earn it. Most of them want to be the MD. I have heard it first hand. Now I do agree that the education system and appalling government policies for many years have made this worse than it needs to be, but that is not our fault. You voted for them.




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        • Anonymous says:

          Yes, very skillfully put, but the days of today’s professional Caymanians taking heed of such artfully tactical language – or, indeed just about all Caymanians – are waning, sportsfan, so time to “smell the roses”, as they say. Your stance is as extreme as it is willfully or otherwise misleading. “Most of them want to be the MD. I have heard it first hand” is quite hilarious. You’d last less than 30 seconds under questioning in the dock. (Goodness, did I say “in the dock”? Perish the thought – along with your utter baloney!)




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    • Anonymous says:

      I know seriously then even more wash outs would come here!




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  3. Anonymous says:

    So, Mr. Premier, you are the Minister responsible for Immigration. Serious allegations have been leveled as to potential breaches of the Immigration Law (and other laws) by members of the legal fraternity. There is an election coming. Is there an investigation underway in relation to the breaches or not, and if not, why not? As a matter of fact, have legally required applications been made or not? Simple stuff. What is the answer?




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    • Anonymous says:

      WTF is nobody concerned about passing FATF requirements?!? This territory continues to be lead by mentally deficient adolescents! Since when do we give a $#@& about our plethora of symbolic and unenforced immigration (or any other) laws?!? Meanwhile, here comes another expensive smackdown from a powerful inter-governmental tax-nation-biased body and the avoidable media wallop to follow…we are our own worst enemies!




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      • Anonymous says:

        I don’t know about you but I consider the possibility of law firms committing crimes to be very serious indeed.




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        • Anonymous says:

          Their not committing any crimes. No one has identified a single firm committing any crime. Why? Because none have.




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          • Anonymous says:

            I beg to differ and I have a list




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            • Anonymous says:

              A list has been made.




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              • Anonymous says:

                And if the list was published it would be ripped to shreds in 10 minutes. Being nonsense and all that.




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              • Anonymous says:

                And are you checking it twice to find out who had been naughty or nice?




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                • Anonymous says:

                  Someone better be. We have to have confidence in the rule of law. If we do not the consequences will be very severe indeed, on all sides. Some of the alleged offenses are very easy to prove or disprove. There is no excuse for delays. It is very straightforward and much is a simple yes/no answer.

                  Were Caymanians who were not partners held out regulators as partners? Are persons sharing in profits who are not partners? Is the beneficial ownership the same as that disclosed to regulators? Have immigration law section 51 applications been consistently made with accurate disclosure as to the effect or likely effect on Caymanians? Have Caymanian applicants for positions been consistently disclosed in work permit applications?

                  Even if no crimes have been committed, we should also ask whether any conduct, even if not criminal, falls below the lofty standards expected of any officer of our courts.




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                  • Anonymous says:

                    You do know how easy it is to structure a business to avoid any of this being a problem? You do know what Cayman lawyers do every day is structure businesses to avoid pesky legislative annoyances?




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                    • Anonymous says:

                      You do know that some of our relevant laws contain anti avoidance provisions that make the structuring you have just admitted is widespread, a crime?




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                  • Anonymous says:

                    This type of conduct most surely fans below such persons being fit and proper persons to be officers of the court. It’s very disappointing that this has been going on with full knowledge of the judiciary.




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          • Anonymous says:

            Why did one get fined in excess of 100K for breaching the immigration law then?




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  4. Anonymous says:

    Keystone Cops comes to mind – Incompetence of the highest order




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    • Anonymous says:

      Colossal waste of peoples money. PPM has never worked so hard to bring relief to the poor as they did in the LPP.




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  5. RES IPSA LOQUITUR says:

    The recent LPB fiasco is the best example of the PPM’s lack of parliamentary organization, the usual arrogance of Alden McLaughlin and Wayne Panton which resulted in an unmitigated failure for their government and the Caymans.




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    • Anonymous says:

      The Cayman Islands! Otherwise I agree. The Governor must act. Every other aspect of the civil service appears incompetent or incapable of dealing with the very serious issues Winston has raised.




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    • Anonymous says:

      Ridiculous to try and blame this on the PPM. You can dispute the merits of the LPB but to say that it their fault that it did not pass is outlandish.




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      • Anonymous says:

        A ppm led government had a majority for 4 years to pass the LPB who else is to blame?




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        • Diogenes says:

          Winston, Arden and Ezzard.




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          • Anonymous says:

            Law Society, CBA, and everyone who has failed to ensure enforcement of existing laws. “Trust us, next time will be different” was never going to work given the sordid past.




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          • Anonymous says:

            IF you can blame Winston, Arden and Izzard for doing the RIGHT thing then go ahead. I blame the CBA, CILS and the PPM for only looking our for the big firms and for trying to trick everyone into passing a law that would have been disastrous for our jurisdiction.




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      • Question says:

        If the PPM thought this was good for Caymanians why didn’t they pass it? They have the majority in the LA!!!




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      • Anonymous says:

        It is their fault because instead of trying to pass a good law they sold out to special interest groups and refused to address any of the issues raised by their people! Can’t believe what they tried to get away with here!




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      • Anonymous says:

        The debate was framed on local immigration laws rather than the more pressing issue of FATF compliance. There are no headlines that describe what was really at stake or what our consequences will surely be now that this has been abandoned. It’s because WE continually elect provincially-minded xenophobic morons to our LA and deliberately bar more qualified and intellectually capable Caymanian candidates.




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        • Anonymous says:

          Have you considered the consequences that would have followed this bill being passed? It was never good for the jurisdiction and the FATF argument is convenient given that there were far more simple ways to ensure compliance that would not have involved such sinister hidden agendas.




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