Absent port CFO officially retired

| 13/01/2020 | 43 Comments
Cayman News Service
Port Authority of the Cayman Islands

(CNS): The deputy director and chief financial officer at the Port Authority of the Cayman Islands (PACI), James Parsons, has formally retired, according to a brief statement released Monday by Acting Director Joseph Woods. Parsons had been on extended sick leave for around 18 months before he retired from the job on Christmas Eve. There has been no indication what recruitment plans are in place to replace Parsons long term and no announcement has yet been made about the new director.

In 2018 Parsons was the subject of an internal investigation, which concluded that false allegations had been made against him. But the auditors found an “unhealthy work environment” at the port and noted the lack of “necessary trust and confidence in management” to address sensitive issues.

“This apparent lack of trust and inaction leads to an environment which is not conducive to a healthy work place in which problems accumulate and staff becomes demoralised,” the report by the Internal Audit Unit found.

But the port authority continues to face a number of challenges with both the management team and the night shift at a time when government is still pressing ahead with the controversial proposal for a cruise berthing facility, which includes the enlargement of the cargo dock in addition to cruise berthing facilities.

If the government manages to persuade the people in the forthcoming referendum that the piers are needed, PACI will be responsible for the management of operations of any new facility. But Woods has confirmed that he has not applied for the job in which he is currently acting, and although interviews for this critical post have been conducted, no one has been named to take the job.

Woods was named acting director after Clement Reid was first suspended and then fired from the post in November 2018 as a result of a number of scandals surrounding mismanagement and misuse of public funds at the authority.

The issues came to light in a report by the auditor general. Reid was accused of breaching recruitment practices, spending over $130,000 decorating the port offices without approval, allowing staff to go on paid leave to work for the Speaker of the House and of turning a blind eye to the theft of boat engines, among other allegations.

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Category: Government Administration, Jobs, Local News, Politics

Comments (43)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    You should not open your mouth if you don’t know what you are talking about. This too depends on which of the two Lodges you are talking about. Some of our best Government Leaders was Lodge members. We should all take an example from them and stick together then no ex pats could have the jobs. We have a tendency to blame, blame. From the Prospect there was and are some of is considered the more responsible and better behaved men. Perhaps you wouldn’t qualify to be a member. They are not seen in the Community but yet do a lot for our Community. Does it matter the membership as long as they are good and caring men. They are a mixture of good men.

    • Get It Right says:

      Sir, with all due respect you miss the point.

      I am sure there may be a few good men in the membership, however there is a blatant issue.

      The membership ONLY looks out for other members. Period…. Full Stop…..

      If it looks good on the membership it’s done. If a member wants something done, it’s done….

      The membership will ensure its members, ONLY, are hired. Especially at top posts.

      There in lies the issue. Whether or not the member hired is even qualified to do the job, or when another member needs a favour (like getting a development passed, even though it is wrong on something). Whenever a member falls foul of the law (its kept out of the public)… part and Parcel of being in a Lodge is the sworn Oath to always be Loyal and Supportive of the Membership and OBEY all commands, under pain of death.

      With the Lodges comes the issue surrounding loyalties. Is the individual going to be loyal to the people (i:e: Gov’t) or to the Lodge and its members. Who wins and who loses and at what price.

      The issue is that the ” Lodges” here are known to be biased, self serving and only look out for its membership and the wants, needs and desires of its members. The Lodges here are known for MONEY. That’s it.

      They attempt to use the phrase “betterment of mankind” to fool people into believing its for everyone, but they dont.

      They only take care of their own membership. That’s it.

      In Govt that should not be allowed. Period. One cannot serve Two Masters. It’s like swearing allegiance to God on one hand and Satan on the other hand. Which hand wins?

  2. Make a bet says:

    Its being said that the new head of the Port and another top job have been filled.

    I am willing to bet a million to one that these people will be Lodge members.

    Lets see…….

  3. Anonymous says:

    Its extremely tough to be a whistleblower in Cayman because it can almost take you down when you expose corruption. We have a long way to go to protect whilstleblowers who put themselves at serious risk when they expose wrongdoing. The workplace is finally being held accountable for the damage caused to a person. This is a positive departure from what used to happen.

  4. Anonymous says:

    After sucking on the government tit for 18 months doing nothing, are you kidding me.

  5. Anonymous says:

    The large problem of corruption and corrupt actions throughout public agencies is not necessarily because of Caymanian leadership or staff but moreso Lodge membership. That’s the over-riding factor – Lodge first, everything else after!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Good riddance, didn’t need him anyway because Donovan has been running the Finance Department from day one.

    • Anonymous says:

      Can we talk about turning a blind eye? On CB we have high up government employees buying goods stolen from other government departments. Unbelievable.

  7. No Lodge Allowed says:

    There is a reason behind all these issues Gov’t has with Officials and Boards.

    Two words, and I will probably be targeted for it, but just the same. MASONIC LODGE.


    1) The Port. Anyone been listening, reading??? Jamaica the other day announced that the reason their Cruise numbers are low is because CAYMAN does not have a port for the cruise ships. Notice how the major players caught up in this are Lodge Members.
    2) Majority of Senior posts in GOV’T, Authorities or Boards is headed by who? Lodge Members.
    3) The Judicial section. Anybody notice how nothing becomes of it or is mentioned about it when any Lodge member has judicial issues. A few months ago a senior Lodge member in Cayman Brac was arrested for stealing numbers. Anyone hear anything more on it??? Gone silent……
    4) Standards in Public Life Law. Wonder why it’s not past into law yet……

    Just a quick fact on the Lodge. The Cayman chapter of the Masonic Lodge falls under the Grand Lodge of Jamaica..Fact.

    The Masonic Lodge demands that members uplift each other always. Meaning that they take care of each other, for the benefit of the Lodge….Fact…

    If the Standards Law is passed then all members in GOV’T, Authorities and Boards would have to declare their membership and ultimately chose to either remain a member and resign or denounce membership and stay. It’s a conflict of interest to be a Lodge member and work GOV’T, Authorities and Boards. Why? Because the oath Lodge Members are required to make stating they will always support their members.


    Just look at the recent hires in Gov’t lately.


    Get rid of Lodge Membership in Gov’t, Authorities and Boards then you will see a difference.

    • Anonymous says:

      ho hummm

    • Anonymous says:

      I couldn’t believe what I had read that Jamaica was blaming the Cayman Islands for their drop in cruise ship arrivals. I must’ve had a few drinks, or had a bad dream. Is that the reason they are getting their hands into the water sports business, to get the 99o/o of the revenue? Greed kills.

      • Anonymous says:

        Was speaking to some cruise passengers yesterday at Kentucky in town ,after asking if they liked cayman ,,,,they replied yes but it expensive and here was not their destination,they were to go Puerto Rico,but because of the earthquake the ship came here . Kentucky must have been the cheapest place for them to eat. ,,but at after twelve and they were headed back to their ship,’,,,cause it’s cheaper.

        • Anon says:

          1.15pm The Dept. of Tourism claim the average spend of these people is over $100, yet if they eat ashore at all, they choose KFC and walk to the beach rather than splash out $2 for a bus fare.

    • Anonymous says:

      Sounds like you got black-balled.

    • Anonymous says:

      As a PROUD and COMMITTED member of the Lodge- may I suggest that you edify yourself as to what Lodge really is? Yes we take care of our fellow members, but so does other civil clubs (Lions, Kiwanis etc). Does the Church not uplift its members? They ALL do.

      Since you claim to know so much about the craft, why don’t you sit down and have a face to face conversation with a member of the lodge to really be enlightened on what lodge is.

      • Anonymous says:

        Might as well tell me to go ask a pastor about why tithing 10% of my salary isn’t the biggest scam of the millennium.

      • Anonymous says:

        Why is your membership criteria and membership a secret. Each of the associations you mentioned above, have transparent membership criteria.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah, take care of your fellow members by over-promoting each other so that you are all indebted to each other and have to keep favouring each other over the common good. I don’t call that uplifting, I call that corruption. If you want to take care of each other, get together and share your feelings and give each other hugs and have that be the end of it. Uplifting each other should not extend to making the rest of us suffer so you can all be ‘better fathers’ with fat salaries or something. No one buys that ‘making better men’ means all kinds of brotherly inner work. It means making outwardly better men by the corrupt use of authority and influence all shrouded in symbols and secrecy. Besides, if you tell yourselves that you really are making each other better, then you must think you are all better than everyone else so you must put each other in charge. What a warped sense of duty that is. I’m sure the explanations as to what Lodge really is are all well crafted and practised and seemingly convincing but I know better. All one has to do is look at the list of objectively underwhelming men in your organisation to see that it is a society for the advancement of the mediocre above their talents. The rest of us are fed up with nothing ever happening for the betterment of all.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Familial ties both to the tourism ministry and between current board members are clearly evident on the port board. Integrity and independence does not exist. Vested interests are obvious. The track record of these directors is appalling.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Note to self: milk out all the sick leave possible when retiring.

  10. Anon says:

    It’s the same problem as with the Civil Service, this is what you get with a 100% Caymanian management workforce. Look at the NRA, Cinico,,Immigration Dept, the Turtle Farm, Customs, the CIAA, the list goes on.

    • Anonymous says:

      True, but PACI is the absolutely runaway worst from a catalogue of bad departments. Criminal on-duty arrests, no financial records, VIP lounges, power blind and semi-autonomous conflicted Board…it goes on and on. Because of the poor record keeping, I doubt we really know how bad it actually is, or what illicit cargoes are actually transiting our jurisdiction. By design, from the top.

    • Anonymous says:

      This statement is completely false. Ask anyone who will speak without fear about the goings on in some private sector entities. But you can’t, because all of the atrocities committed by non-Caymanians there aren’t spoken about and there is no mechanism for them to be aired in public.. hence ‘private’ sector. The fact is your viewpoint is skewed. The Public Service makes it a point to hire and promote Caymanians. The private sector seems to do the exact opposite. The public sector is subject to various laws and policies that aid in transparency etc. In addition to this, generally speaking, good things aren’t reported on because its not newsworthy to tell you that everything is going well. Every now and then we get a story of an accomplishment or two, but even then we the readers trash the accomplishment with negative comments. Bottom line is, if you have a large entity that hires and promotes one set of people, and that entity is also subject to transparency via various avenues, then you couple that with the way that news/media works, then you will get a skewed and unfair opinion of that set of people because all you will see and remember is the negative things that happen. Don’t paint everyone with the same brush.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ministry of Health too right, and MRCU right?

  11. Anonymous says:

    Are we still pretending there aren’t egregious conflicts between Port Mgmt and Cabinet? Who was it that was given 63 days paid leave, no questions asked, to go work for McKeeva Bush?!?

  12. Anonymous says:

    That this is still the least transparent, honest, and/or responsible department in the CIG speaks volumes. No CFO for 18 mos!!! Why would we green light the first loser with the largest contract in the territory’s history? You can’t make this stuff up!

  13. Anonymous says:


  14. Anonymous says:

    I sometimes wonder if Moses and Alden can’t see the signs that this cruise port thing is running headlong out of control..

    Just looking from the outside, Blind Bartimaeus can see that this thing is going to blow up in their face.. The people don’t want this, there is no one in charge, there is no CFO and internal employee/employer problems. We are in bed with convicted polluters. The international press has already picked up on this mess…We need to shut this thing down now while we have the opportunity…

    We have a chance of making this a good news story and maybe the politicians can seize on this opportunity to show off our island as the one that stood up to the Cruise Ship companies and won…There is nothing wrong with admitting that you were wrong and that you will stand by your people.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes it’s not to late to turn this thing around . It is ok to say we were wrong and let’s now work together to make it right. Let’s be know as the Island that supports Eco Tourism. Let’s be the Island that limits the amount of tourism in town with say max 4 ships a day and we pick who gets to come. Make it exclusive. High end band lines with charges of pollution.No dredging .Don’t go for the quick dollar which future generations will suffer from. Anyone can now see the people do not want this. Stop 🛑.

    • Anonymous says:

      Too much invested and too many promises made to turn this port ship around. Sad but this the way this country is run. Take for instance the GMO mosquito implementation which was a total failure. We spent thousand of money and yet no heads were rolled? Why is this? I am at a loss why the private sector has not challenged any of this i.e. where is the Chambers of Commerce, the law firms, the accountants, the banks…….silence?

  15. Anonymous says:

    It’s just “Same old, same old”, as usual. Typical CIG!

  16. Anonymous says:

    No Port Director, no CFO, disgruntled employees, job environment rife with scandals everywhere…Looks like we need to build a management team before we think about building a cruise port…

    What say you Moses?

    • Anonymous says:

      And these guys will be handed responsibility for a new cargo port and cruise ship facility costing $400 million. 🤔🤔😂😂

    • Anonymous says:

      Yep, $200M dollar project and not one single person in charge, knowledgeable or responsible..

      You can’t make this $hit up!!


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