Civil servants encouraged to report misconduct, says DG

| 16/09/2022 | 103 Comments
Cayman News Service
Speaker McKeeva Bush and Deputy Governor Franz Manderson, National Heroes Day Jan 2018

(CNS): Deputy Governor Franz Manderson has issued a release to stress that recent allegations that civil servants’ contracts restrict them from reporting “wrongdoing” are incorrect and public servants are allowed and encouraged to report concerns. The DG’s statement comes in the wake of allegations that Speaker McKeeva Bush sexually harassed at least two female civil servants at a cocktail party at the Ritz-Carlton on Tuesday evening.

“I am aware of recent media reports concerning allegations of assault by a member of Parliament against female civil servants who were attending an official event on 13 September,” Manderson said late Friday afternoon. “As head of the civil service, I wish to make it clear that we are committed to ensuring the safety of our employees and protecting their rights, including their right to report wrongdoing. The civil service has zero tolerance for misconduct,” he added.

Reports of Bush’s inappropriate behaviour generated public conversations on Cayman Marl Road and across social media, as well as almost 400 comments (as of Friday evening) on CNS, with some of the discussion raising concern that the two women, who are both civil servants and were working at the event, would be discouraged from making a formal report because of the high office of the alleged perpetrator.

“The allegations of assault on 13 September are under RCIPS investigation, as confirmed by their statement on 14 September,” the DG stated. “I am therefore unable to comment further on the matter at this time. I will continue to exercise duty of care for all civil servants and will not abrogate my responsibility to provide a safe work environment where they feel cared for, protected and comfortable giving feedback including to senior leaders.”

It is still not clear if the police have interviewed the two public servants or any other women at the event who were alleged to have suffered inappropriate behaviour from Bush, who has been described as intoxicated by several witnesses.

While Bush has often been informally accused of this type of behaviour and was arrested in Florida for allegedly sexually harassing a waitress at a casino in Seminole, he was released soon afterwards and has never been charged or convicted of this offence.

However, he is still under a probation order related to a suspended sentence for assaulting the female manager of a Seven Mile Beach bar that Bush had gone to while very drunk. He had passed out on a pathway leading to the establishment, and when the manager attempted to assist him, he assaulted her. He was convicted in December 2020 after entering a guilty plea, despite making various public denials after the fact.

Earlier this week, the leader of the PPM said that he would be reserving any comment about this latest situation regarding Bush until after the period of national mourning for the late Queen Elizabeth II.


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Category: Policy, Politics

Comments (103)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Yup, just raise your hand and Tony Soprano will take it from there.

    21
  2. Anonymous says:

    you will miss the next promotion, increase in salary, or simply placed somewhere else.
    this disgusting behaviour will not stop until the politicians guilty of this are put in jail.
    it’s a black Caribbean male society mixed with religious fundamentalisme.
    what can you expect ?

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  3. Anonymous says:

    The DG is just doing PR. Nothing will come of any reports on his watch for sure.
    An absolute waste of time. Save your energy and breath.

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  4. Anon says:

    Can someone please let me know to whom I should report misconduct committed by the DG and a chief officer?

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  5. Anonymous says:

    It’s a travesty that deep investigative reporting eludes us here in Cayman with no criticism targeting CNS or other media houses. I kind of understand how the small community dynamics may put up hurdles with those that speak out becoming Island blackballed, media houses limited resources pursuing in depth extended stories etc but I’d be very interested to hear maybe from CNS or otherwise of the difficulties and realities faced if trying to delve into this kind of journalism. Ultimately there are significant potential stories here and validated exposure is the real arrow to thwart the flagrant actions and maybe begin a start towards probity. A real stride as many have said starts at the top, but only it seems in most instances here at least is if only the top are held to account

    CNS: The issue is, as you stated, limited resources. Independent, indepth, investigative reporting is costly and very time consuming but only a few people are prepared to pay for news anymore, so we plod on best we can with what we have.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    Will the DG demand that the Civil Service identify and stamp out misconduct? He risks being found to be heading an expensive charade. Be careful DG – one day soon a young observer may declare that the emperor has no clothes.

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  7. Anonymous says:

    I was a senior public servant who uncovered and was directing the the investigation of nefarious and corrupt activities at the SAGC where I worked. During the process, the Government changed and all the statutory appointments which go with it. When I briefed the new Board Chairman and ultimately the Minister responsible, I was instructed to “put the investigation on hold”. Subsequently, nothing happened. As far as I know the perps involved are still employed in the system and reaping big salaries at public expense.

    Why? Chairman, Minister and the main alleged perpetrator are all Lodge!!

    DG, do you have a cure for that in the civil service?

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    • Anonymous says:

      It’s sad when elected people think more of their Lodge than their country.

      Wasn’t there a law at one time that prevented Caymanian Lodge members from having positions in our government ? Sounds good to me!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Just to enlighten you, there are lodges and there are Lodges some much more respectable than others. And it makes a world of difference to know which is which.

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  8. Anonymous says:

    I am a former ex-pat civil servant, having worked in a high profile government department for four years.
    Following various, (and continuing) nefarious activities by an established (ex-pat Caymanian) colleague, I placed my head above the parapet, and alongside another colleague made direct and unequivocal complaints of an extremely serious and potentially criminal nature. Those complaints including bullying, harassment, racism, victimisation, unauthorised use of government vehicles, conducting private business during official working hours, data protection breaches, and so the list went on.
    Whilst we were assured that the complaints would be taken extremely seriously, true to form, the pernicious culture of cover up, obfuscation, and incompetence became evident. Unsurprisingly, this long serving and corrupt individual has been enabled by managers to continue with their activities unhindered, and two competent and honest members of staff were left with no alternative than to leave their positions.
    One of these staff members had been injured during the course of his duties and was honoured by the CI Government at Heroes Day celebrations, yet his service and loyalty accounted for nothing in the face of bare faced corruption. The department didn’t even advise him on his right to workplace compensation, instead actively covered up the fact that he had been placed in a life threatening position whilst others left their designated posts for external activities, including getting drunk.
    The department of which I speak continues to bury its head in the sand as far as this unspeakable behaviour is concerned, with levels of management incompetence and maladministration seemingly off the charts.
    The DG needs to get a handle on this 3rd world culture of protecting the bad and getting rid of the good if he wishes to attain his stated goal of a world class civil service.
    I stood my ground and asked the awkward questions, I also stood for honesty, service, and public duty, and lost a job that I loved as a consequence, but I don’t regret facing bad or corrupt behaviour. It’s just a shame that those we rely on to serve the country with integrity can’t bring themselves to do the same and rid themselves of this poison.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Sounds all to familiar! Anyone who raises concerns is targeted and pushed out.
      There isn’t any route to raise concerns or have it investigated without exposing yourself to losing your career and life on island. Cronyism and corruption is just accepted as the norm.

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      • Anonymous says:

        It’s sad when elected people think more of their Lodge than their country.

        Wasn’t there a law at one time that prevented Caymanian Lodge members from having positions in our government ? Sounds good to me!

        12
    • Anonymous says:

      If this poster is referring to the department I think they are, the same (allegedly) happened to a (third) young Caymanian colleague when he too made serious complaints against the same individual.
      This young man was effectively pushed out of this department by inept managers who refused to act upon his allegations, apparently he now works for CBC.
      How is this acceptance of bad behaviour allowed to continue, and why isn’t anyone trying to stop it, including the press?
      The DG needs to set up an inquiry into standards within the CS and ask for evidence of wrongdoing to be forwarded for proper investigation. It’s long overdue and desperately needed.

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  9. Anonymous says:

    Hopefully when they make these reports that they are not victimize afterwards.

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    • Anonymous says:

      And there’s you’re problem. In CS and across the island women are too afraid to speak up.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Your hope is regrettably misplaced. The organization appears rotten to its core. Direct, meaningful, and immediate outside intervention is needed. It is incapable of managing itself. Accountability is a foreign concept. Anyone who dares speak up from within is destroyed.

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  10. Anonymous says:

    Would Patrick Moran agree that is a prudent, appropriate thing to do? How did his complaints pan out? Ironic he lost his job, while drug smuggling prison guards, and sexual assaulting police officer seem to have kept theirs. Are you sure you have not lost touch with reality, Franz?

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  11. Concerned Citizen says:

    s part of the 21 Dec 2020 court ruling, https://cnslibrary.com/wp-content/uploads/William-McKeeva-Bush-Sentence-Ruling-21-Dec-2020.pdf

    – Para 9 – the defendants personal mitigation “The Defendant advises that he has ceased alcohol consumption”
    Note – this reduced his sentence, so should his sentence be re-visited?

    – para 24 – he was on a curfew – to be home by 6pm – did he break the court order?

    – para 24 – He is able to leave the house on curfew and not confined to house arrest as long as he does not have any “new offences”

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  12. SJames says:

    I am hearing of sniff tests at airport and North Church street land and it is not the Wildwood Weed.

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  13. Anonymous says:

    Looks like you have plenty of tolerance for misconduct.
    Sad.

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  14. Anonymous says:

    Jus make sure unna do not report one of Franz peeps. Do dat and see what happen .

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  15. Anonymous says:

    Who do I report the payment of tourism stipends to prisoner’s to, Franz?

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  16. Anonymous says:

    Like if the (former) Ombudsman appointed a fellow countryman overseas to an important office, Franz? What would happen were that kind of wrongdoing reported?

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    • Anonymous says:

      2:53. You mean you don’t know that our DG has no authority over the Ombudsman. Come on get a life.

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      • Anonymous says:

        He is the head of the Civil Service. The Ombudsman is a Civil Servant. Laws apply to everyone – except it seems certain Civil Servants, their friends, their cousins, and key politicians.

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  17. Anonymous says:

    Like when you report a prison officer for banging a high security prisoner in her office? Right Franzie? How’d that work out? Almost destroyed the person reporting the wrongdoing.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Not to mention poor Brian Tomlinson who stood up to the illegal importer of explosives, and was fired and hounded for insisting correct procedures be followed.

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      • Brian Tomlinson says:

        … and the truth shall set you free.

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        • Anonymous says:

          Brian – you are a hero to many. You are deserving of support and vindication. I wonder whether any police officer, Governor, complaints commissioner, Deputy Governor, Attorney General, Member of the Anti Corruption Commission, has ever so much as interviewed you let alone made a serious inquiry into what transpired and how – and sought to find Justice for you.

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        • Anonymous says:

          But seemingly will not spur the DG, Governor, Commissioner, ACC, Attorney General, Ombudsman, or any other of the multitudes of highly paid and very expensive organs of our world class civil service into appropriate action.

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        • Beaumont Zodecloun says:

          Yes, Sir, it will. The question is whether that freedom will result in positive change. We all hope. Thank you for doing the right thing.

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  18. Anonymous says:

    Harassment, sexual or otherwise, of civil servants by elected officials is a form of ‘political pressure’ within the meaning of the S.23 of the Public Service Management Act. The DG is obliged by that law to properly investigate all such reports of such harassment and to report to the Premier/Governor if the evidence indicates that harassment has occurred. I wonder if that has ever happened and whether it is happening in this case?

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  19. Anonymous says:

    Looks great on paper and sounds honorable when spit out from a politician’s mouth! Talk is cheap! 😂😂😂

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  20. Anonymous says:

    Lol. I reported a colleague who set up their own business and then refused to work standard hours so they could operate a business instead. They tried to fire me.

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    • Anonymous says:

      A similar thing happened to a colleague of mine. Only thing when he reported the lady, he was called into a meeting by his supervisor and advised that his contract would not be renewed.

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    • Anonymous says:

      They also go after anyone in the private sector that dares to attempt to bring attention to their serious failings. Many of them have become participants in a harmful criminal enterprise, worthy of little but disdain.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Oh yes, just don’t ever forget the private sector. It is a pity that the Anti-Corruption Act does not apply to that sector. So many incidents of directing business of their employer to their own family business or friends for the obvious. Been going on from the beginning of time in these islands and no end is in sight. Conflicts of interest are plentiful too.

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        • Anonymous says:

          The private sector is not spending the public’s money. If anyone stole from a private company, the operators and shareholders would insist they be brought to justice.

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  21. Anonymous says:

    I wonder why there are no comments on here from those who suffered harassment and reported that harassment and received the support they should have received…. why would that be?

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    • asurvivor says:

      …Oh, possibly because the misogynist society in Cayman (Government as well as the populace in general) does not offer support to women. Gee let’s re-elect a woman-beater; gee let’s place him as speaker; gee, let’s talk about full-moons. Cayman is truly run like a third-world banana republic.

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  22. Anonymous says:

    It is unfortunate that the DG/Portfolio of the Civil Service has not published any record of the number of complaints by civil servants alleging harassment/maladministration/unlawful acts , the investigative process adopted in respect of each complaint, and the outcomes. No names need by published, just the facts. That would go a long way towards assessing the comments of lack of senior management support in this forum and in others.

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    • Anonymous says:

      11:34. Really is this the best you can do. How about standing with the DG and demand better from our elected officials. You are either part of the solution or part of the problemn.

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    • Anonymous says:

      The question you should ask is – How many are on gardening leave so they don’t show up in the government FOI stats?

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  23. Anonymous says:

    FACTS –
    1) The Public Service Management Act (PSMA) has no whistle blower protection provision and no guidance on what civil servants are to do when they are victims of harassment.
    2) The S5(2) PSMA obliges the civil service to ‘respect’ the Speaker among others whether they deserve respect or not, and it prohibits harassment by civil servants but makes no statement about anything that protects civil servants from harassment by those they are required by law to ‘respect’.

    These are obvious long-standing flaws that should have been fixed long ago. Similarly, it would be an obvious fix for there to be a specific dedicated office in the Portfolio of the Civil Service to which any civil servant could report harassment and receive support. Those fixes could be easily implemented by the DG but no one should hold their breath.

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    • Anonymous says:

      11:57. Rubbish. Read the civil service anti sexual harassment policy.

      You meant you read this statement and don’t speak out against what happend to these civil servants.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Ummmm —- that policy speaks to harassment of one CS by another CS. It is devoid of any explicit procedure in respect of harassment by a Member of Parliament

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    • Anonymous says:

      It would be Me-Too.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Of course DG. How else would we know who the “trouble makers” are.

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  25. Anonymous says:

    You can report it all you want, just nothing will get done about it. When I worked in government I made a formal complaint about a superior that were pretty serious and corroborated by another person. Told the CO, DG and AG. Three years later, I’m out of the civil service but the wrongdoer not only is still there but was actually promoted. Not world class!

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  26. Anonymous says:

    “feedback”

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  27. Anonymous says:

    Cayman is a Land of many laws but zero oversight

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  28. Anonymous says:

    Asking for a friend. Has anyone looked into RCIPS finances/budget and how the commissioner is spending the money?

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  29. UnCivil Servant says:

    We are most definitely living in a time when intelligent people are being silenced so that morally, ethically corrupt and stupid people won’t be offended.

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  30. Anonymous says:

    So Franzie, when the conduct is criminal and amounts to Maladministration, what happens? You know, like Gasboy, or Stipend Frauds, or
    Pension Thefts, or illicit Status Grants, or side businesses milking the public purse, or immigration frauds…

    Just wondering, since it all looks like a highly organized very expensive scam on the good people of Cayman.

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    • Merith says:

      8:49. Stop living in the 80’s. Stand up against misconduct.

      Note. If you read this article and the best you can do is comment about someone that happened 20 years ago you need help.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Umm, stipend frauds were this year. Nothing referenced is more than 18 years old. Each is overt and readily apparent, appears criminal, and has never resulted in any formal investigation let alone prosecution. Each of these items (and more) have been complained of, and their has been no action other than multiple messengers attempting to draw the issues to the attention of the authorities, being figuratively shot. This leads to the perception that the authorities themselves are guilty of misconduct. They certainly seem to be falling consistently short in their duties to maintain and enforce the highest standards of good governance.

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        • Anonymous says:

          Everybody’s doin’ it, doin’ it , doin’ it!!!

          We have a lot of thieves in the Caymans.

          • Anonymous says:

            Including the police and other enforcement officials who seem to have no problem taking their pay and benefits while failing or refusing to do their jobs! It seems theft from the public is fine. Continually. Repeatedly. Perhaps the Commissioner could explain? Gasboy? Stipend Fraud? Clear evidence all known or knowable. Many guilty parties, many in our illustrious world class civil service. NOT A SINGLE ARREST!!! Why do we even bother?

  31. Anonymous says:

    Thank you Mr Manderson. I don’t know why you are only public official to speak on this. Where are the other MP’s. Cayman expect better from our MP’s.

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  32. Anonymous says:

    Nonsense, report wrongdoing and see how ‘differently’ you are treated. Speaking from experience!

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    • Anonymous says:

      SO true 7:06. This is the biggest joke! Another of his PR announcements. Just go and report anything concerning one of Franz’s favorite minions and see what will happen to you.

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      • Anonymous says:

        1:27. That’s right the DG has 4k favourites. Why do you think he issued the statement.

        Why can’t you get your head out of the muck and support Good things when they happen.

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  33. Anonymous says:

    HahahahahHa such Barney blsrney from world class.

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  34. Anonymous says:

    This is a set up against Honorable Bush, leave him alone

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  35. Junior says:

    I cant, ill be victimized and ousted sorry.

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  36. Anonymous says:

    And the cover up begins, not a thing will happen about this as the gold old boys have circled the wagons. The victims will probably receive a huge career advancement as well as some extra financial compensation as long as they just forget the whole incident.

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  37. Anonymous says:

    Hahahahahahaha yeah right DG report to who ???? Yes and be victimized three times or forever in some instances it’s called marked for life in the system the Unforgiven we all know them Cayman and I can tell you there is not a single solitary person at the top is in that category but a whole lot of them are enormous tyrannical victimizers that I can tell you for sure.

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  38. Truth says:

    Thats not true. A report of Bullying went in about the CICG and it was ignored.

    What was said was “while there WERE instances that could be considered Bullying these instances were not seen as Bullying”

    So please talk the truth and stop trying to blindside and misdirect people sir

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    • Anonymous says:

      1:40. Just because you didn’t like the decision doesn’t mean it was wrong.

      Telling you to come to work on time and work hard is not bullying sir.

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  39. Anonymous says:

    Right to report it yes.
    But then who is going to defend or press your case?
    Not the Legal Dept!
    On your own then!!

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  40. Anonymous says:

    Ha!
    As a longtime worker who has reported serious misconduct and abuse that I witnessed, this is a joke.
    Some are still in the service and others have thankfully gone on

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  41. Anon says:

    Oh please, how many times was his behavior on display at the Royal Palms in the olden days?? And that was before social media. He can’t + won’t stop. Franz + we all need to stop enabling him.

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  42. Anonymous says:

    Thank you DG. I expect to see demonstrations at the Parliament.

    Cal your MP and demand action.

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  43. N says:

    “Zero tolerance” is NOT at all accurate though, else Bush would have gotten more than a “suspended sentence”! For a crime well documented on video and presented for all to see. That along with his many other misdeeds and yet he holds one of the highest offices in the land! With most afraid of Big Mac as he is an embarrassment and a BULLY!
    If these two ladies (upstanding and outspoken) don’t stand up and press charges, then there is near no hope that anyone else will.

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    • N says:

      I should clarify: The DG may have zero tolerance (to take some action – though this usually amounts to a lengthy paid vacation in the civil service) but CIG needs to ACTION zero tolerance….not just say so!

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  44. Anonymous says:

    And who will protect those that come forward from reprisals? Yes, I thought so, No one. Thanks Franz – You are an embarrassment. Will you do your duty here, finally???

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    • Anonymous says:

      Franz has no interest to do his duty. He will climb into the sand, bury his sad head and hope this all goes away quickly. His only reprieve is to get rid of the MacBeater forever! We are waiting Franz! Do you have the fortitude to do what is called for, or will you shrink from what you are needed to finally do?

      CNS: Under what legal power do you think the DG can remove the speaker of the House, who is an elected member and chosen for the position under section 65 of the Constitution? There’s plenty of criticism to go around but it serves no purpose to just make stuff up.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Just a temporary resignation form the speakers chair. What are you going to do Wayne? It’s you move Mr. Panton or are you hoping that by the time you return this will blow over and you may keep your position until next election?

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      • Anonymous says:

        It is frightening that so many who probably go to polls every four years to vote has absolutely no clue of how the government/legislature works. Its is mind boggling how many are so ignorant of these things.

    • Anonymous says:

      You should have realized by now that , no matter the sin, Caymanians will ALWAYS look after one another, especially if criticized by a foreigner.
      Franc is just held hostage by that fact.

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    • Anonymous says:

      9:47 your lack of knowledge is an embarrassment.

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  45. Anonymous says:

    Tuesday can’t come soon enough.

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  46. Anonymous says:

    Thank you DG. You always do the right thing. Which means it may not be popular.

    The silence from from the so call brave stalwarts and politicians is worrying.

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  47. Anonymous says:

    Ummm, DG – reporting wrongdoing is career suicide. It is unsafe as it is ineffective.

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  48. Anonymous says:

    DG gah jokes doh.

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