Opposition pursuing ‘special’ meeting of Parliament

| 05/02/2021 | 100 Comments
Cayman News Service
Opposition Leader Arden McLean (file photo)

(CNS): After Premier Alden McLaughlin said he did not intend calling a meeting of the Parliament before the body is dissolved in March, opposition members are seeking the seven signatures necessary to force a special meeting to debate the no confidence motion in Speaker McKeeva Bush. Answering questions from CNS at Thursday’s press briefing, McLaughlin said that, although government had circulated laws, there was no plan to meet before the election.

The premier said he was not prepared to call a special meeting and that it was up to the opposition members to secure the support needed for it. But he said that was unlikely to happen because there were only two opposition members in support of proceeding with the matter and they “need to get some solidarity among themselves before they try to trigger a meeting”.

CNS reached out to the opposition members Friday.

Chris Saunders confirmed that he and his colleagues would be seeking the special meeting and the formal opposition members were squarely behind the request to debate the motion filed by Opposition Leader Arden McLean and supported by the independent MP, Ezzard Miller. Saunders said he believed all of those on the opposition bench were committed to the meeting and would sign the request.

He also said that a number of government members were also in support of the motion being aired, regardless of the premier’s position, but their fear of admitting they want the issue to come to the floor of Parliament would probably prevent them from signing the letter.

During the press briefing Thursday, Minister Roy McTaggart, responding to questions about the issue for the first time, told CNS he supported the premier’s position. As McLaughlin interjected to suggest that his ministers did not need to be individually polled, as they had taken the same position as him, Minister Dwayne Seymour chuckled and gave no response.

With only seven weeks of this parliamentary session left and then just two months until the election itself, removing Bush from the speaker’s chair would be more symbolic than substantive, but Miller and McLean have both insisted that in order to protect the institution of the office of the speaker, and by extension the Parliament, the opportunity to sanction Bush must be allowed.

Whether or not the necessary two thirds majority would be achieved for the motion to succeed is also in question. But three and a half months before going to the polls, forcing government members to debate what has become a key election issue would make for an interesting debate.

Government members would be forced to navigate between remaining with and holding the coalition together through the campaign and constituency concerns about their lack of condemnation, given Bush’s conviction for a violent assault on a woman.

Questions also remain over what lengths the premier would go to retain the coalition, even as the administration comes to a close.

It is apparent that McLaughlin had not ruled out an additional meeting of Parliament before this motion was filed. At the end of the last session he had indicated that before the election, government might finish various pieces of financial service legislation that needed to be dealt with in connection with the Financial Action Task Force reviews.

Some legislation had already been circulated that would fall away without a meeting, so it is not clear why thsi was done if the premier had not planned a final session.

In addition, the Public Accounts Committee has a number of reports that should be tabled and made public before the election campaign. These relate to two particularity controversial issues at both the turtle farm and the airport, and highlight problems with this administration’s management of statutory authorities.

It is rare, too, that any administration misses the opportunity of a final farewell session, when members can use an adjournment debate to highlight what they feel are their accomplishments ahead of the campaign.

However, some members may have an opportunity to discuss the situation regarding the speaker behind closed doors. The UK Commonwealth Parliamentary Association is organising a virtual roundtable discussion for members later this month on best practice for legislation to protect women from violence in the Commonwealth. The organisers said the discussion would provide an opportunity to share jurisdictions’ achievements in legislating against gender-based violence.


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Comments (100)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Kenneth is the reason for the vote not taking place in the beginning.

  2. Anonymous says:

    So what’s the holdup? If they don’t get moving, the election will be over. No one appears capable of getting anything done, ever.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Fun watching the undereducated “figure things out”. Then look at the comments and see why they are in charge. I am amazed that this island of fools is still functional.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Are there any pictures of Eden and Whogene NOT sleeping at work? Never seen any so just wondering.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I love how Kenneth put up those signs in GTC “make Cayman great again”. Kenneth one way to do that would have been to vote Mac out. That would have been a good start. Lots of friends and family in GTC and not one of them will vote for you.

    • Anonymous says:

      Who paying for all that plywood?

    • Anonymous says:

      I genuinely had high hopes for Kenneth. I really hoped he went far.
      I can only imagine the pressure he was under for that fateful nail in his coffin when he did not wote Keke out.
      However, that is as far as my ‘compassion’ for that pressure goes.. I will NOT be woting for him this time.

    • Anonymous says:

      Don’t expect Kenneth to do the right thing. We do not need him.

  6. Solon of Athens says:

    the power of hail and snow come from a cloud.
    thunder happens from bright lightning.
    and a city is brought to ruin by influential men,
    while the people, because they do not know better,
    fall to a despot’s subjugation.
    to put one who’s been raised up high back into his place,
    that’s not very easy.
    so now–not later–one must reflect on these things.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Hutland Voters Association??? Strange article coming from them as this area is supposed to be Jay Ebanks’ stronghold and although he has announced he is running as an independent there is talk on the street that he is trying to get on the Progressive platform. Are you independent or not? The last election McKeeva was endorsing you although you ran independent. Guess we will find out soon enough.

  8. Truth says:

    I said it before and I will say it again.

    “The Lodge” is who is controlling was these so called “Ministers” do.

    Get rid of the power the “Lodge” has within Govt and certain people and you will see a world of difference.

    Until then just suck it up baby.

    And now que all the cancel culture and deflectors…….

    • Anonymous says:

      It seems that “Truth” is 100% right with his comment….. and it makes me wonder where all the honest people hide when this is brought to light. A country cannot survive with leaders that do NOT make proper decisions because they have “connections” with the rich boys that run things in the Caymans. Will it ever change? Probably not. It’s been that way too long, and none of the privileged want to lose the big paybacks from their friends. Yes….. it’s illegal, but that doesn’t seem to matter in the lot with all those hog troughs!

    • Anonymous says:

      We need Aldone gone now! And his cronies.

    • Anonymous says:

      In a small country like Cayman, it’s all about who you know. That’s a valid comment and observation, but it has nothing to do with the lodge at all. It’s because the island is small and people know how to contact, and that applies everywhere here, lodge or no lodge.

      • Anonymous says:

        True and false. But you are wrong about it having nothing to do with the lodge. You must be new here.

        Just you go take a look at who is in the lodge, where they started and the positions they hold and businesses they own now.

        And, I might add, pretty much ALL Caymanians wish to be a part of that lodge. Trust me on that!

  9. Hutland Voters Association says:

    There will be NO Meeting Cayman unless and until we change this! and for GOD SAKE do not vote in these False prophets and ex pPM proxies or uDP extension cords you understand exactly who is behind and affiliated with them. Cayman voters you know What Time it is ?????

    • Anonymous says:

      There are seven opposition members. They Should have The numbers to trigger a meeting. It only takes seven. But they do not really want a meeting. They want to talk about one. That’s it.

      • Anonymous says:

        The opposition members (except for Ezzard) are all blowhards. Arden is only making noise because he wants people to believe that he really cares about the issue at hand. He is as disingenuous as one gets. He is using this to get sympathy for the upcoming election due to his lack of performance.

      • Anonymous says:

        Hit the nail on the head. The opposition does nothing but talk, no counter proposal, nothing for Caymanians except talk. Pay them in bubbles, STUPID do something for US Arden.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, it’s time for a radical change in the way our MPs conduct business both personally and in true service to these islands. We need a paradigm shift in the way electors make their decisions solely based on favours offered by their respective candidates.

      • Anonymous says:

        The road to hell is paved with good intentions. Just look at our barely still powerful neighbour to the north. Better the devil you know. What happens if there is another crisis? I doubt if your “radical change” agents will handle it so well. When it becomes obvious that they are not just corrupt as you now call it and are guzzling at the trough you probaby say “well the others did it”. So just like our aforementioned neighbours until Jan 2021 we’ll have a more corrupt as well as highly incompetent government.

    • Anonymous says:

      As the saying goes ” hindsight is 20/20 vision!!

  10. Gentle Reminder says:

    There will be no meeting!!!!! How do you expect those who’s own guilt and membership of chauvinistic institutions etc Lodge prohibits their own conscience from having sympathy or compassion or remorse for their own history of violence and disrespect for women, homosexuals, or less fortunate persons. Make the Change STOP Voting for Status Quo Cayman.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I think it’s time the FCO stepped in to find out what exactly Mac has on the rest of the politicians in these here islands!

    • Anonymous says:

      I think that’s an interesting comment. I, too, wish Mother would descend upon us to sort out all our wrongdoings.

      BUT! Imagine for a moment how we would whinge and gnash our teeth and wail if, in fact, the FCO stepped in to push us aside and conduct an investigation. Good Lord, we would be beside ourselves with worry that the elitists were inflicting their governance upon us.

    • Rocks & Hard Places says:

      What is it that allows you to think that the FCO is not both culpable and complicit, and that there are reasons for which neither transparency nor accountability fits their own agenda?

  12. Anonymous says:

    Opposition perusing political expediency

  13. Anonymous says:

    I am very disappointed in McTaggart, absolutely no backbone and no vote from me.

    • ThIs WrItInG Is VeRy IrRiTaTiNg says:

      … and he is the chosen one to become the leader of the PPM so things will continue down the same path.

      I’d bet he’d have a different view if it had been his daughter on the receiving end of McKeeva’s drunken attack. Anyone looking to be elected who does not condemn McKeeva’s behaviour in public should not receive any votes from anyone.

      • BeaumontZodecloun says:

        We have ten districts which have only the incumbent running in them, at least according to the map here in the 2021 Elections forum. TEN! And gee, wouldn’t you know it, McKeeva’s is one of them. Who would have guessed?

        • Anonymous says:

          Patience. It’s not wise to declare early these days.

        • Anonymous says:

          Does this mean that if the incumbent runs unopposed a single vote would put them back in? If so, something is so very wrong.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Alden, I hope your constituents outvote you in favour of Sammy Jackson. You deserve it for shamelessly backing up that West Bayer so many times. Meanwhile, Prospect’s prospects make me drowsy; I pray additional – better! – options declare in the coming days. As for NS, I think their incumbent is better than the options put together. I hope NS give themselves four years to identify a worth-while successor because I agree: Miller has no people skills – but he respects the laws and his seat.

    • Anonymous says:

      The Premier has kept this country safe and has refused to give in to the greed which sought to undermine us. I hope he gets back in and that the Governor nominates him for a knighthood. Many of us support you dear Premier.

      • Anonymous says:

        To 5:41 am: Many support Mac too. Does not mean Mac deserves to stay.

      • Anonymous says:

        I am voting for the Premier come May 26, 2021

        • Anonymous says:

          Love how Alden supporters hate McKeeva but love Alden. You know that you’re still supporting someone who overlooks violence towards women?

          • Rocks & Hard Places says:

            Anyone who thinks or portrays the sentiment that, for the well being of the Cayman Islands, the overriding reason why William McKeeva Bush has to be permanently removed from all spheres of power and/or influence is because of this latest fiasco of inebriated assault are themselves a part of the problem, not the solution.

          • Anonymous says:

            this is it for me. I have no intention to vote for Alden (and yes I vote in Red Bay 6 votes in my family) because of his stand on this and turning a blind eye to violence on women.

            At least have the meeting speak on it then vote…… but to not even consider it is beyond me and says a lot not only about Alden but also the women in the LA! Shame on you!

        • Anonymous says:

          Vote for Violence against the women in your family and life, wake up, at least demand the simplest of morals

      • Anonymous says:

        Hey posting bar or is it supermarket corner wanting knighthood for the Premier. Hmmmhahahahah.

      • Anonymous says:

        So you have a daughter sister or Mother?

    • Anonymous says:

      Absolutely. Alden has shown over and over that he doesn’t care about the people or this country- he will always sell us out. Re covid the fact that we are an island and able to close ourselves off saved us- not him or his donkey health minister. In fact he messed up quite a bit during covid causing panic runs on supermarkets and the beach. If he would have not had such an ego and let everyone know his long term plans chaos and panic could have been avoided. He acted like a Devine dictator during covid and visibly enjoyed the power he held over all of us puppets. It was like a game of Simon says. We are lucky to be in the position we are in b it I think we could have gotten there more smoothly without his attitude. Aside from covid all he has done is sold away the cayman people and passed laws that benefit special interest groups and entered secret agreements with “developers”. Every day we are closer to complete ruin thanks to the ppm. If we don’t fix this now all is lost.

    • Anonymous says:

      Sammy who?

  15. Anonymous says:

    Dear fellow voters: here is where we come in.
    Call or WA your representative or post on their social media letting them know what we want. Does Alden forget that they work for us and we pay their salaries and perks?! He and MacBeater obviously think they can simply ignore the Motion and smirk at us. #MacBeatermustgo !

    • Anonymous says:

      All women beaters in the Parliament must go!

      Please ask the Leader of Opposition how many that would be.

    • Anonymous says:

      Weed calms. Alcohol induces violence. If big mac had partook in a huge legal spliff rather than a litre of rum, he wouldn’t have gotten in a fight that night.

      Only thing I can fight while high is a plate of food.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Alden the expedient local coward! Man up. Better yet sit down and let someone with integrity run this country.

  17. Anonymous says:

    And that’s why I will probably vote for Sammy, once I find out his views on this case, otherwise donkey vote.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Everyone should email their MP and let them know they expect their signature to be on that request. Remind them that they work for the public.

  19. Anonymous says:

    I’m sure theres a few things hes done but can’t recall anything major that Arden has contributed to the betterment of the Cayman Islands in all the years hes been well paid as a public servant. I hope the people of East End will give Mr Frederick the chance to finally make some way overdue changes.

  20. Anonymous says:

    “Dwayne Seymour chuckled”. He’s good at that. He chuckled when he made his “gaypril” joke during the various exchanges about the civil partnership issue. He’s a real chuckler. That’s all he’s good for…chuckling.

    • Anonymous says:

      Leave jon jon alone!

      • Anonymous says:

        Shameful. They all are worthless and do not deserve their huge inflated paychecks!

        Roy- you had 50+ letters last weekend 1-1 from prominent Caymanian women calling for Big Mac’s removal and no reply except to stand by your party instead of doing the right thing and protecting women? At least the Governor replied to every letter. He is a true public servant, you are a coward.

        As for chuckles, no surprise here, not a brain cell in his head.

        Women of Cayman: Demand these Ministers to act.

        It only February!? but no one brace enough to act before election May 26??? Vote them ALL out!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Chuckles Seymour. Kinda flows off the tongue. So much better than Jon Jon. Or Joke Joke.

    • Anonymous says:

      It’s a dumb fool chuckle 🤭

  21. Fed up says:

    Where these ladies MPs? Do they think it is okay for man walk free as woman beater?

  22. Anonymous says:

    Arden will say and do anything in order to retain his seat. Why didn’t he feel this way when he was all cosy with Mckeeva a few weeks ago?? My friends in East End say he is in trouble. Frederick may take him out.

    He needs to go. He needs to also answer his own stance on domestic violence and “beating of women” years ago.

    Political expediency for survival is what it is called

    • Anonymous says:

      No matter 7.21,. If he helps getting rid of Mac, he will have been of invaluable service to Cayman and it’s Mac free future.

    • Anonymous says:

      I think you meant to write ALDEN

    • Anonymous says:

      This is exactly why I believe a candidate should be allowed to run in any district. Some districts have little or no choice of candidates and sometimes we just need that ace in the hole to rid rouge MPs.

      That time is now!

  23. Anonymous says:

    5:58 pm, good. Very good

  24. Anonymous says:

    Good

  25. Anonymous says:

    Can anyone imagine any other full-time occupation where with the waive of a hand and proclamation, that: although there are business matters to attend to, and that you are being paid to deal with, you’d prefer not to have to show up for work until a half year from now. Now watch how many fellow back-benchers agree!

  26. Anonymous says:

    I am a female voter in George Town Central who is patiently waiting to see how Kenneth Bryan votes on this issue..

    Kenneth me and my family are patiently waiting for you to take a stand against violence on Women ( I have three daughters)

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