Governor Roper hopes to stay for full term

| 30/10/2018 | 18 Comments
Cayman News Service

Cayman Islands Governor Martyn Roper arrives at the Owen Roberts International Airport

(CNS): Cayman Islands Governor Martyn Roper has said that he will be serving as Britain’s representative here for between six to nine months but hopes he will be staying much longer. Addressing the Legislative Assembly after he was sworn into office on Monday, he acknowledged that his arrival was unusual and noted the difficulties, frustrations and uncertainties created by the sudden removal of his predecessor, Anwar Choudhury, but said he was determined to build trust with the people of the Cayman Islands and “to serve you to the best of my abilities”. Roper said he was committed to contributing positively to the country, keen both to listen and understand the views and aspirations of the Caymanian people.

The new governor’s speech followed an address by Premier Alden McLaughlin, who outlined the current positive economic situation and growing public coffers as well as some of the social challenges in Cayman, particularly surrounding immigration and local sentiment that Caymanians are not being treated fairly in the workplace.

Addressing the LA, Roper said he would work to support the government’s work. He said he would be explaining more about the work of the governor’s office and using social media to interact with the wider community and break down any barriers.

As well as focusing on his special areas of responsibility, such as national security and good governance, the new governor said he would be engaging in the discussions about constitutional reform. He said he was keen to listen to the points of view of the people and that he would be engaging with the opposition as well as government.

He said he would be paying attention to the rights of the people, including equality for all Caymanians, and, hinting that he would be dealing with the issue of same-sex marriage equality, he said he recognised that there are sensitivities.

Turning to the issue of beneficial ownership, Roper said he was well aware of how this had been a challenge.

“I am very aware of the importance of financial services to the Cayman Islands’ economy and, in particular, that beneficial ownership has been a difficult area in the UK’s relationship with the Cayman Islands for some time, and I recognise the concerns by the passing in the UK of the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act,” he said.

“Balancing the Cayman Islands’ right to compete and set its rates of taxation with the high standards needed to prevent harmful use of financial services will continue to pose challenges. Being on the front foot and proactively getting ahead of the curve on regulation and enforcement will, in the long run, ensure we can address risks with confidence.”

He also welcomed the premier’s move to re-engage with the exchange of notes between the Cayman Islands and Britain, which he had pulled out of following of the passing of the bill. But the decision caused controversy, with the UK’s National Crime Agency calling out the Cayman Islands in the British press for being uncooperative with some criminal investigations.

“I warmly welcome the constructive role played by the premier in the agreement to re-engage with the exchange of notes process on beneficial ownership information sharing between law enforcement agencies. That is a really positive signal that we can together solve contentious issues,” Roper added.

But he also said that he would fight in Cayman’s corner and do what he could to help “London understand your point of view”.

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Category: Local News, Politics

Comments (18)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Just don’t say anything and shake your head yes and he can stay as long as he wants.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Staying full term would be detrimental to his health. The island is toxic to its core.

  3. Anon says:

    Never trust a ‘career politician’. Ever. Reason why it is their only paid career. Most have at least some ethical employment. These career ones…oh well.

    • Anonymous says:

      Sorry Anon, I’d trust a career politician over the non-career politicians we have any day.

  4. Anon says:

    Head of Mission via China. Writing is on the wall. Career politician to boot. Not good.

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh you men someone came here to govern who may have already been briefed on CHEC? About damned time.

  5. Puzzled says:

    BA was here yesterday, so why did the new governor travel via Miami?

    • Anonymous says:

      Well historically the planes flying to Miami were always better than the 767 we used to get from BA. Over-nighting in Miami is probably what gives the arriving party the energy to get through the day (the direct flight, gate to gate, is 5-6 hours more travel). The direct flight arrives too late for the first day ceremonies (and no, he can’t land the day before and do all the ceremonies the next day – the flight arrival is part of it and needs to take place in the middle of the day). And finally, it only makes sense that the only British Overseas Territory with its own commercial airline should fly its new Governors in on that airline. The flight was no doubt free. Your apparent notion that he should arrive on BA, as if from on high to govern the natives, like they used to do sending peers and relatives of the Queen to be Governor-General of Canada, Australia, New Zealand etc., is a bit repulsive, in 2018. Now that the Governor and his wife are here, I am sure they will be able to select the flight arrangements that they prefer.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Welcome, Mr. Roper.

    Just do what Matthew Forbes tells you to do and you’ll be fine!!!

  7. Anonymous says:

    You should take a look at this man’s Twitter page from his time in China.
    The natural thing is to think this is a step down. No, he is here to tackle the stubborn Caymanian spirit that refuses to kowtow to his own corrupt country’s values.
    This fellow did not come here to enjoy the beach.

    • anonymous says:

      2.53pm. You may or may not be a stubborn Caymanian, but for sure you are an ignorant one. The UK is one of the world’s least corrupt countries, but your very own countrymen descry the widespread corruption that exists here in every facet of officialdom.

      • Anonymous says:

        7 39pm, if u r from the U K, then kindly go back there if there is so good.

      • Anonymous says:

        What a bunch of nonsense. You seem to forgot about the MPs expense scandal MPs , Iraq inquiry where Tony Blair blatantly lies about Weapons of Mast destruction or most recently the Windrush debacle. Get off your high horse

  8. Anonymous says:

    Don’t go stepping on anyone’s toes by expecting accountability and transparency and you’ll be just fine, Mr Roper.

    Good luck!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Um, how did you miss Bush comparing him to a cockroach?

  10. Anonymous says:

    I hope he stays full time too, as long as he keeps Alden and Moses in line and do not allow our sea-bed to be destroyed.

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