Revised public ethics law still in limbo

| 19/03/2018 | 12 Comments
Cayman Islands Standards in Public Life Law

Cayman Islands Legislative Assembly

(CNS): Some four years after the original legislation was passed and almost two years after a revised version was steered through the Cayman Islands Legislative Assembly, the Standards in Public Life Law has still not been implemented. Acting Deputy Governor Gloria McField-Nixon told the LA last week that the regulations were being worked on with a view to implementation in the near future, but she gave no indication of when that might be. The law was designed to create more transparency, eliminate potential conflicts of interest and keep politicians and public officials honest. However, enactment remains elusive.

Even before the ink was dry on the original legislation, which passed in the LA in 2013, complaints about the impact on government board members in particular stalled the implementation.

But even after the Standards in Public Life Law was watered down two years ago, because government grew concerned about the negative impact it would have on being able to find people from the private sector to serve on public boards, the law is still not in force.

As McField-Nixon presented the 13th report from the Commission for Standards in Public Life, she said the members were still working on the regulations for the legislation alongside those for the Procurement Law, which is seen as supporting legislation. The report, which is available in the CNS Library, reveals that the commission has been pressing government over the regulations since last February.

The report also documents the concerns of the commission over the findings of the Gender Equality Tribunal relating a case of discrimination at the prison and the failure of the civil service management to conduct an inquiry into what happened.

The complaint was filed by male prison managers, who said that the prison was favouring a woman who was believed to be a friend of the former director. The commission found in their favour, though the special treatment concerning the manager appeared to be down to her long-time friendship with the prison boss rather than her gender.

The report highlighted the concern of the Commonwealth observers during the May 2017 election about the lack of transparency regarding campaign financing. But it also notes that the commission had agreed not to issue any statements or releases about the election as the law was still not in force.

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Category: Government oversight, Politics

Comments (12)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    We do not need any of this new regulation. Just look at all our great Unity government are doing for everyone. Our economy is growing and more and more investors are coming in. Getting the Chinese and Russians helping with projects will be the icing on our cakes! This is just more red tape and road blocks by people who dislike our elected government.

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  2. UnCivil Servant says:

    None have of the MLA’s have the integrity to do the right thing or want a law that will expose them all including the highest levels of the civil service. More buzz words and rhetoric. Franz and Gloria should be embarrassed to give these type of empty updates which prove they are part of the overall problems.

  3. Anonymous says:

    No need for such a register.
    We all blessed since we do not have any ministers, senior public officials or board members on our statutory boards who do not act in their own family’s best interests. there is no conflicts of interests. No need for more transparency.

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  4. Anonymous says:

    but an ethics law might mean they can’t take advantage of that nice free trip to China…..

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  5. West bay Premier says:

    Anonymous 1:00 pm , I agree that the Governor should foist it on them , and also have a private commission to go over bill before and after it has been voted on . But something needs to be done them .

  6. Anonymous says:

    The law wasn’t onerous in the slightest, yet here we are four years on. Don’t expect any trust from the public until the bare minimum standards of ethics and transparency are applied.

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  7. Anonymous says:

    I wonder why….if I was suspicious or cynical I might think that lawmakers don’t want ethics laws. This is one the Governor should foist on them as they clearly have no interest in doing it properly.

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