Mac steps up attacks on CPR

| 20/11/2019 | 134 Comments
Cayman News Service
Speaker McKeeva Bush at government’s West Bay cruise port meeting, 20 November

(CNS): Speaker McKeeva Bush has directly attacked the local Cruise Port Referendum (CPR) activists who successfully campaigned to trigger a people’s referendum on the port project. At a government meeting on Tuesday, Bush made several misleading claims about the campaign and the cruise project before urging the people of West Bay not to listen to the campaigners, claiming they were posting false underwater pictures of reefs in the harbour, but to listen to government, who knew what was best for the people.

Bush was the chairman for the third meeting in government’s port promotional roadshow, which was held in West Bay. The speaker used the platform to accuse the CPR and its members of using the referendum as a way to get into the Legislative Assembly. But he also made some very serious misleading comments to the audience about the marine environment in George Town harbour, the motivation for the legal action the campaigners are taking and accused them of lying.

Bush said they were “dirty people” who were posting pictures on social media of underwater scenes and reefs that they claimed were in George Town Harbour when they were not. However, the he offered no evidence for this claim and there is no indication that any pictures posted in connection with the ‘no’ campaign anywhere were not genuine, given the amount of marine life available to photograph.

He said that while there may be some genuine conservationists, many of them were peddling conflicting stories just to stop the dock. “Be careful who you listen to,” Bush said. “Don’t be fooled by those campaigning against the dock because they hope it’s going to take them into the Legislative Assembly.”

But with government implementing a policy at these public meetings of only allowing written questions, the activists behind the historic people’s referendum were not given the chance to correct the misinformation delivered by the speaker.

While Bush misled his constituents, Premier Alden McLaughlin continued to show his impatience and frustration with the entire campaign and the successful triggering of the referendum. He described the national vote as nothing more than “a distraction” against the backdrop of many other issues, which had to be got out of the way as quickly as possible so government could get on with the business of running the country.

Making it clear that he believed the government had a mandate for the port project, despite the widespread and visible opposition to it, McLaughlin continued to dismiss the national vote as something the government had to deal with purely because of the Constitution, failing to recognise the wider public mood regarding this proposed project.

The premier also claimed that Seven Mile Beach remained the red line and if there was any indication that would be at risk the project would stop. But the CCMI has already warned that the beach is under threat, a warning that McLaughlin has dismissed.

During the written question submissions the premier was asked why the date for the national poll could not have been delayed by a few weeks, and to justify spending public cash promoting the port project when there was still so much information to be learned.

Without actually answering the questions, he instead criticised the CPR group, saying that nothing could ever please them. McLaughlin said government had been working on this project for six years, had already spent some $5 million on the process and it now faced a group of people who wish to derail it. The referendum, he told the audience, gave them their chance to test the reality of the country’s mood but government had a duty to get on with things.

Stating that if government has got it all wrong, a proposition he clearly didn’t support, he conceded that government would have to honour the result, but in the meantime he was not prepared to wait. The campaigners would not be allowed to delay the vote, he said, until they thought they had the numbers to win it. But the premier did not explain why the vote could not be delayed for just a few weeks. He claimed the day chosen, just six days before Christmas, was the earliest possible date the vote could happen.

“If the verdict is ‘no’ it will be a travesty and a terrible decision,” he said, adding that unless a court ordered it, the government “won’t delay the process just to satisfy CPR”.

McLaughlin accused the CPR of orchestrating a year long misinformation campaign, but he said that government believes the electorate is capable of judging what is true and what is not, as he suggested there was more than enough information in the public domain for people to decide.

However, there is widespread concern in the community that the lack of environmental and geo-technical information as well as the actual final business case makes it very difficult for government to hold a fair vote under such circumstances.

Representatives from the Verdant Isle group have confirmed that much of the environmental threat and issues will not be understood until well after the referendum. And they have confirmed that if the vote is a ‘yes’, construction work would not start until 2021 at the earliest because of the amount of studies and surveys that still have to be done. They also said that the massive task of attempting to move over a dozen acres of coral currently in the dredge footprint would take up much of next year.

The government’s public meetings continue on Thursday at the Elmslie Momorial Church Hall in George Town. See schedule here. Meanwhile, the CPR officially launches its referendum campaign tonight, Wednesday 21 November, by the court house in downtown George Town at 6:30pm.

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Category: development, Local News, Politics

Comments (134)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Can’t wait for the day when you post the headline: MAC Steps Down From Politics

  2. Anonymous says:

    Can someone address how rude and obnoxious and RUDE Mackeeva Bush is to people on Facebook?

    He is supposed to be the Speaker of the House in the Cayman Islands but I saw a thread that was posted this morning and it was

    the most belligerent and condescending back and forth

    I have EVER seen.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Someone needs to address why Kenneth Bryan was not allowed to give his speech in the LA yesterday and, instead, had to give itmon the Rooster’s Crosstalk this morning!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Ask Kenneth why he did not answer when the speaker asked for other contributors. That was his chance. If he was in the chamber, why did he not speak up?

  4. Anonymous says:

    If only a vote of no-confidence could be held to get rid of the current Speaker; however, it is clear that Alden has neither the ethics, nor the balls, to initiate the removal of this despicable man. Please can someone step up and do the right thing. Mac should not be allowed anywhere near government ever again.

    • Anonymous says:

      That’s all Mac can do…that’s all he’s ever done…politricks. He’ll be on his deathbed running for office

  5. Anonymous says:

    …by the way! The CPR Launch was AMAZING last night!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Next referendum:

    Term limits

  7. Anonymous says:

    This guy is beyond reproach. I don’t understand why anyone on this blog would wish to say a bad word about him. He is honest, trustworthy, articulate, well-educated (he’s a Doctor you know) and only acts in the best interests of his country. Isn’t he a recognised ‘hero’ of Cayman?? We celebrated his heroics on heroes day, years’ ago!

    Now please, residents of Cayman, stop being cynical and support him. I for one, hope that he will remain our neutral speaker for years to come and continue his ethical approach top his duties……like all those other ‘clever’ members of the Legislative Assembly

  8. Anonymous says:

    I thought The DG issued a statement saying civil servants were to stay neutral on the port discussion…

  9. Anonymous says:


    1- CPR will lose at the polls on the referendum

    2- CPR won’t accept the results because it has NOTHING to do with the will of the people, otherwise they would have respected the mandate of the last general election

    3- CPR will take it to court afterwards so to continue to shove their agenda down the throats of the voters regardless of the outcome of the vote

    • Anonymous says:

      the mandate of the last general election????
      the one where ppm lost their majority?

    • Gordan Bodden says:

      Why not use your name, Mr. Anonymous? Are you a crooked politician or someone shilling for one? The way I see it, the dock is unnecessary and just a waste of money.

    • Anonymous says:

      Mandate??? from who? It took three groups to form a government and all had differing opinion when it came to the port..Nobody gave this government a mandate except themselves..

    • Anonymous says:

      VOTE NO!

    • Anonymous says:

      You wish!

    • Anonymous says:


      1 – Government will continue to rig the referendum vote and ensure that the Port is built regardless of the consequences.

      2 – Government will continue to ensure that their fellow comrades are well compensated from this deal. (for this is the real reason that the Port is being built)

      3 – Government will continue to pursue their own agenda

      4 – Government will not give two sh!ts about the people, their vote and the environment.

      5 – Government will continue to not be held accountable for its actions.

      6 – Government will continue to live in the dark ages and refuse to enact meaningful legislation that will allow for equal rights for its own citizens.

      7 – Government funds will continue to be squandered on unneeded infrastructure and pointless assessments.

      8 – Government will continue to allow the monopolization of all industries.

      9 – Government will ensure that conflicted individuals remain on the Board Committees that have a ruling on any meaningful capital projects.

      I can go on…

      Do not underestimate the youth.

      Change will come and the Cayman Islands will be all the better because of it.

    • Anonymous says:

      Quick question:

      What mandate from 2017 are you referring to?

      The PPM lost 3 sitting ministers and only got 7 of their 15 candidates elected (do the math on that, not a very good showing) and not to mention the PPM got a smaller number of votes total (across all candidates elected and unelected) than CPR collected in signatures

      The CDP ran against the PPM and against the PPM’s plan for the project, got 3/11 candidates elected and got less than a quarter of the votes cast, and again the CDP got a smaller number of votes total (across all candidates elected and unelected) than CPR collected in signatures to get this referendum

      Both Austin Harris and Dwayne Ebanks ran opposed to the PPM with their own manifestos and Austin Harris specifically ran explicitly opposed to the project

      Elected members have the right to sort themselves into whatever grouping they want to form a working majority post election, but don’t pretend they were all elected on the same platform to deliver the same projects, because they quite clearly were not

      Don’t play dumb, and certainly don’t try insulting the intelligence of the voters of the Cayman Islands
      Its not CPR that has spent the last two years running from a public vote, it has been the CIG, CPR had a cheering crowd of people last night, meanwhile the government can barely fill a civic centre without hiding on stage behind the cruise lines and their PR agencies

    • Anonymous says:

      The CDP tried all the tactics Alden is now pushing for this referendum when OMOV was going on
      IT didnt work then
      It wont work now

      But the win is going to feel so much better when idiots like you are left with mouths gaping wondering how you could ever be so deluded

    • Anonymous says:

      So true

    • Anonymous says:

      Well If CIG held the election in a legal manner there would be nothing to appeal. Close the bars and liqour stores as the law states.

    • Anonymous says:

      Hope so

    • Anonymous says:

      You’re betting that the side who spent months saying there would never be a successful petition, among countless other things they have been wrong about is going to win based on public support

      Lol, you’re the type of person I like betting against, no clue what you are talking about and acting like the smartest guy in the room

  10. Anonymous says:

    They use public money to smear a democratic process supported by the people…time to clean the swamp…can some other people please run next election?..don’t even need high school equivalency…just know right from wrong and have integrity.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, let’s have people who have no personal agenda like personal financial gain to run to lead these beautiful, incredible islands. I thought this buffoon was already out of the game but I see he is still spewing his ridiculous thoughts. Wonder what his agenda is?

  11. Anonymous says:

    Can we deport Makeeva to Timbuktu?

  12. Anonymous says:

    Do you have no shame?

  13. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Premier, how can CPR and its supporters be accused of spreading misinformation when they have not been given any information??

    The Govt has been so secretive about information on the proposed cruise dock. Also, Govt has admitted that most of the really relevant information about the cruise dock cannot be completed and provided until the new year 2020.

    So exactly what mis information is being spread??

    • Anonymous says:

      What misinformation? Here it is: You have sufficient information to vote yes? By your assessment clearly a false statement.

  14. Annoy says:

    Mac you’re nothing but a back door dealer.and you would sell us out cost it what as a speaker should be put in a speakerbox

  15. Anonymous says:

    Mac you’re nothing but a back door dealer ready to sell us out at any cost and cost it what it will we will not continue to beyour scape goat

  16. Anonymous says:

    Ha,ha, if one takes a couple of minutes and research on YouTube one can see when Cruise ships have had accidents on Coral reefs in town. Zenith was place on anchorage by a port Captain from the tender company. A Holland America ship sideswiped cheeseburger reef when another port Captain anchored it in town instead of sending it to Spotts. We all knew there was a Northwester coming in town.
    Another Carnival ship turned again due to a Northwester and smacked a large chunk of Eden Rock. Then years later we had a ship with empty containers run on top of Eden Rock reef. The ship was 330 feet long, a buoy was missing to let the Captain know not to go that close.
    Paul Allen yacht was sent to 7 mile Beach where it dropped anchor on the reef and was fined. Why anyone would send a large yacht to 7 mile beach without a port Captain is unbelievable. So McKeeva is not wrong.
    There is a drawing of a proposed port circulating through out Cayman. If that one comes to fruition I believe it would be a better port. But Government wouldn’t control that. It would have to be close to a town. That definitely would have to have upland development for the investor to recoup his investment. The North sound would have been my first choice. So I secretly hope they put it there. We will need to dredge with a large hydraulic dredge to 50 feet. Then we could make an island with a beach and canal lots. It would be beautiful and unique for the Caribbean. We have no choice we need to move forward. WE desperately need a cargo dock. But we could just build a cargo Dock and then build a Cruise ship in the North Sound. I betcha we could turn this idea to the cruise ship companies and they would like it better. You wouldn’t have a day that we couldn’t use the facilities completely. Protected from sea and wind except hurricanes. Our future depends on this next step forward.

    • Gordon Bodden says:

      And I’ll “betcha” you don’t have any idea concerning the cost of your dream or the destruction of our environment it would cause.

  17. Anonymous says:

    any comment mr governor?

  18. Anonymous says:

    mac….another perfect example of why status holders need to be allowed to run for office asap.
    what are people afraid of?

  19. Kurt Christian says:

    Vote No

  20. Anonymous says:

    Mckeeva has now become irrelevant..His same old scare tactics and fear mongering doesn’t work anymore…

    I look at him now and I think this is supposed to be the Speaker of our House and he is nothing more than a foul mouthed washed up politician. I am so ashamed for our islands..

    • Anonymous says:

      I look at him now – first word comes to mind is pathetic. Like the great orange one I think they are both beyond hope.

  21. Anonymous says:


  22. Anonymous says:

    Not only is he not neutral, but he doesn’t know what the &#*$ he’s talking about. SLANDER!

  23. Anonymous says:

    the same guy who collapsed a bank, got arrested in a casino, used Govt credit card for gambling etc etc, – I’m really hoping more than half of the voting population has the integrity and smarts not to be influenced or align themselves with this windbag. Alden, what happened, public servant or chattel belonging to the plc’s

    CPR carrying the torch for those to be better informed – thank you

    • MR says:

      Unfortunately he has turned WB in to the crack capital of the island and many of his voters live on his doorstep for their $5 or $10 a day living stipends… I am sure he will be back in 2021 unless his supporters are placed in rehab

      • Town Hall Road says:

        And as a West Bayer I must agree with you although it grieves me to do so. He is a total, unequivocal and demeaning disgrace to anything ethical and moral.

  24. Anonymous says:

    How can one stand there and make the comment “the people should listen to government as they know what is best for the people”. Two incidents comes to mind when the people of the cayman islands lost millions of dollars when the government at the time was in power. The Ritz Carlton and the Cohen deals. What is more disappointing was the opposition at the time (Premier McLaughlin) ran his campaign on what had transpired and pointed out the skunk! Couple of years later, the two have joined forces to make the government and now unfortunately, it appears the same politricks continues. What I’ve learn from this, is never to trust politicians! I urge each and every voter to vote for the man or woman who has been honest all their lives, vote on their characters, their proven integrities, loyalty to the country, to the envorinment and the people. We need to stop this BS voting for the ones that gives out hand outs and on bar room friendships. If this type of voting preference continues, we surly will end up like Jamaica, Haiti, Honduras, Mexico and so on. Is this the future we want for our children? Think of where we were 15 years ago and look at us today. Are we really better off with the high cost of living, the traffic, the crime, the lack of beach/swim areas, etc. Please remember all that glitter isn’t really gold. If you recall a bit of American history, the American Indians were tricked out of their birth rights for trinkets and whisky and look at the outcome. This speech strikes a similar comparison to what happened to the Indians and it sicks my stomach that it is our elected leaders that are potentially leading this country into peril. Every country with a few exceptions, are doing their best to preserve the environment and encourage reduction of our carbon footprint. Yet we bull doze trees for more buildings, for more roads whilst the dump grows larger with no immediate plans to recycle or encourage recycling by all citizens. We may be rich with big GDPs and trillion of dollars passing through. However, as a country we are so poor. Just take a look at how we treat our animals. The Humane Society has been flooded and cramped for space for years and it took a private individual to make a difference, NOT our government. Yet they make millions of provisions in the budget for tearing and destroying the envorinment. It is time as a country we start to hold these leaders accountable before it is too late.

  25. Anonymous says:

    What a mess…son- of- a -gun…now.. Mr. Moses now wants to build a turtle farm in the Brac… for when he builds the cruise piers…with no business case and scope of work…and a million dollars…these guys are just a work of art..

  26. Anonymous says:

    Is this also the guy who signed off on Ritz-Carlton? LOL, what a cluster**** that turned into.

    • Anonymous says:

      Got a couple condo’s out fo that one….and Ryan never did pay even the discounted duty however he did receive status that status although a relative short termer on island.

      • Anonymous says:

        Any investigation by our robust law enforcers?

        • Anonymous says:

          No. Many of them got grants themselves. It is an outrage and we pay the price, economically and socially, forevermore. The very pretense that we have checks and balances on the abuse of power in this society is sickening.

    • Anonymous says:

      I remember when the Premier would be jumping up and down and hissing like a snake at Mac but apparently they have morphed into one jackass.

  27. Anonymous says:

    Shooting himself in the foot here! Classic example of Mark Twain’s, ‘It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.’

    I’m four years older than Mac and he’s a real embarrassment to my generation.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Won’t happen but I would love it if every one of these politicians pushing so hard for the dock would sign a statement swearing that they have no financial interest in it.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Is it still democracy if you vote for a candidate based on their opposition to something only to find that when they get into power they vote for it?

  30. Anonymous says:

    If I didn’t love Grand Cayman so much, I’d like to see the port happen just to see the failure and hatred of everyone who is pushing so hard to make this god forsaken port happen.

    It’s going to be a disaster.

    • Anonymous says:

      You know I also had that thought but because I love this little 2×4,Rock I couldn’t say it. Thanks for showing the courage. Many feel like that I suspect. I wish that somehow we could bring a class action law suit on these individuals when it happens. Moses will by that time have ran back to his castle on high ground with never a care in the world.

  31. Anonymous says:

    If one didn’t know better, it could be assumed he had a financial interest in getting the port built….

    • Anonymous says:

      Yep he’s worried 😟.

    • Anonymous says:

      Perhaps he should be reminded that CHEC did not get the contract.

      • Anonymous says:

        We don’t necessarily know that McAlpine won’t subcontract, or necessarily who the shareholders of shell company Verdant Isle are. Maybe the Cabinet were gifted shares too? Who the $&@# knows…

    • Anonymous says:

      You need to get the hell out of the Cayman Islands as Honorable Bush is a true Caymanian who is only doing his best for the country. Keep up the good work Honorable Bush!

      • Anonymous says:

        Doing his best for the country like the Nation building fund, or the hundreds of millions of dollars in debt he left us in

        His best was never good enough
        Why anyone in their right mind let a man who dropped out of high-school ascend to the highest offices in the land blows my mind

        • Anonymous says:

          Didn’t anyone else find it convenient that he closed down his non-profit organization stating the new law was going cost too much for him to run it when the new law said nothing of increasing fees but to make their accounts be public record which non-profits should be?

      • Anon says:

        9.51pm So what did you get for making this comment and what did all your fellow West Bay voters get for voting for this man in every election?.

      • Anonymous says:

        You fool just like him maybe you need to get the hell out as well!

      • Anonymous says:

        Shut up twins

    • Anonymous says:

      lol..and you believe he doesn’t..check out the little bar next to Royal Palms and ask who the owners are..

  32. Anonymous says:

    My question is are these meetings really convincing anyone?

    In my view most people have already made up their mind.

    • Anonymous says:

      I don’t know about the meetings convincing anyone but a couple of people have recently asked me ‘what do you think?’ in that quizzical way of people sounding out their friends to try and reach a decision. So there is still some people who haven’t already made up their mind.

  33. Elvis says:

    Neutral? lmao

  34. Anonymous says:

    My pictures posted on social media of the reef are either of myself or members of my family diving the reef. The reason Bush can say these pictures/videos are fake is because he has never been down there himself and has no idea what it actually looks like. He is not a scuba diver and actually can he even swim?

  35. Anonymous says:

    Bush speaking up for this project is probably the best thing CPR could have hoped for
    Outside of west bay the man is despised

    His endorsement could sour the prospects in many places where his candidates consistently fail to win

  36. Anonymous says:

    I have SERIOUS doubts that if the vote is ‘No’ (hopefully) that the CIG will actually honour it. I can see all sorts of machinations and dirty tricks to circumvent that. Then what Caymanians? What will you be prepared to do?

  37. Anonymous says:

    Looks like CPR has dem shaking in their whompers!!

  38. Anonymous says:

    As a West Bayer, this man called McKeeva Bush is a disgrace to the district and the country as a whole. CPR needs to sue his sorry ass for slander and emanting false and misleading propaganda.

  39. Anonymous says:

    Isn’t the speaker supposed to be a neutral figure in our government and not a blatant supporter of all DART or CI Gov’t promoted projects?

  40. Anonymous says:

    West Bay stands with Mac! We need this dock to secure our future 🤑.

    • Anonymous says:

      @5:12 I’m a West Bayer and I don’t stand with Mckeeva, so you don’t speak on behalf of all within the district!

    • Anonymous says:

      So true!

    • Kara says:

      @5:12pm I am an educated West Bayer, and YOU certainly do NOT speak for me. I do not stand in support of McKeeva and if you had taken the time to do proper research, you would have discovered that many in the district share my sentiments. But good luck to you as you blindly follow your unethical “leader” down that dark rabbit hole.

    • Anonymous says:

      @5:12pm are you stupid? fail out of school?
      I am from West, and I do not stand with this fool.
      Maybe we do need a dock, but not the piers or what the current government has proposed and not with who they want to go into business with.

      • Anonymous says:

        Well some people in West Bay DO stand for this fool. Why don’t you explain to them why they shouldn’t.

    • Anonymous says:

      Another West Bayer here and I don’t stand for this port nor do I actually think your comment is genuine prob another one of those MCBUSH bots!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Try hush you only want a fridge or a stove you know you not interested in any future that goes beyond the next general election.

  41. Anonymous says:

    “Be careful who you listen to,” Bush said. “Don’t be fooled by those campaigning against the dock because they hope it’s going to take them into the Legislative Assembly.”

    “Be careful who you listen to,” a Caymanian said. “Don’t be fooled by those campaigning for the dock because they hope it’s going to keep them in the Legislative Assembly.”

  42. Anonymous says:

    Cayman, I said this now and I’ll say it again. IF.. IF this port goes through and the first day a cruise ship comes in and begins turning that crystal clear water murky. EACH POLITICIAN who pushed for this needs to be lined up and shot on the pier as a warning to future politicians not to XXXX with the environment. Ok maybe not shot but held accountable.

    Seeing how much water displacement those thrusters create, ie like those videos of marinas being swamped, I can’t wait top see what happens to the water front when 4 of those monsters start backing out.

  43. Anonymous says:

    Bush speaks,Third world listens.

  44. Anonymous says:

    “If the verdict is ‘no’ it will be a travesty and a terrible decision,” Him being re-elected continuously is a travesty and a terrible decision.

  45. Anonymous says:

    His ass needs to be sued by the CPR for slander and his ass needs to be removed from his “neutral” position as speaker of the house. He is a disgrace to that position.

    • Anonymous says:

      The speaker of the house is supposed to remain neutral yet he constantly stands up in the house and gives his opinion on those for the CRP, degrades the Caymanians who are choosing to use their democratic rights and urges people to vote yes in flagrant disregard and disrespect for his NEUTRAL position. Obviously Alden is Mac’s bitch, maybe Alden should take his balls out of Mac’s pocket and act like a Premier of this country and do something about Mac.

    • Anonymous says:

      You are a disgrace – leave our island.

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