UCCI chair to also take over NRA board

| 24/01/2023 | 103 Comments
Gilbert McLean Cayman Islands NRA
Gilbert McLean

(CNS): Gilbert McLean has been appointed as chairman of the National Roads Authority (NRA) Board of Directors, replacing Alric Lindsay, who resigned at the end of November largely because of the journalism work he is doing for Digicel’s news site, Loop. McLean is also chair of the UCCI board, for which he receives a stipend of around $48,000 per year, considerably more than the stipend received by NRA board members, which is around $4,000 per year.

McLean also receives a pension as a former Cabinet (ExCo) member, having served as health minister in the 2001-2005 UDP administration. He represented the Sister Islands from 1988 to 1996, and Bodden Town from 2000 to 2005, becoming a founding member of that party when it formed in 2001. After losing his seat in the 2005 elections, he unsuccessfully campaigned three times to be voted back into politics.

His new appointment, which is for a period of three years, was reported in Friday’s edition of the government gazette. The three other new board members are Peter Campbell, Decia M. Foster and Dominique Williams.

Although Premier Wayne Panton indicated in the wake of the 2021 General Elections that the PACT Government intended to seek out new faces and more diversity on local boards, new appointments have tended to be former politicians and familiar faces.

According to a review of 69 boards by the Policy Coordination Unit (PCU) at the time PACT came to office, 446 voting members (61%) were men. Only 31% of board leaders and 37% of deputy leaders were women. While more women have been appointed since the last election, there has not been a dramatic change in the demographics, and the boards are still dominated by politically connected men.

The past three auditor generals have all criticised the tendency towards cronyism in board appointments, with people sitting on boards as a result of who they know rather than what they know.

McLean’s appointment comes as the NRA is embarking on a significant road-building programme intended to alleviate Grand Cayman’s major traffic concerns. This includes the controversial East-West Arterial Road extension, and the NRA will also begin a series of public meetings next month, starting in George Town and North Side, about the terms of reference for this road.

The construction of the EWA extension will impact everyone on Grand Cayman, not just commuters from the Eastern Districts, since it threatens the future survival of the critical Central Mangrove Wetlands.

An estimated 174 acres of wetland could be destroyed by the project, and the road will dissect what is believed to be the Caribbean’s largest remaining contiguous stretch of mangrove habitat. It will also provide access to land in the area, opening up some higher ground for development, which will undermine the ecological services it currently performs, such as sequestering carbon and reducing risks of flooding.

See the new NRA board members in the CNS Library.


Share your vote!


How do you feel after reading this?
  • Fascinated
  • Happy
  • Sad
  • Angry
  • Bored
  • Afraid
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Tags: , , , , , ,

Category: Politics

Comments (103)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Anonymous says:

    I have respect for Mr. Gilbert but I am surprised that he would get involved with this. At his age to take on Chairman of those two Boards is not sensible and he will end up being used to push through corrupt decisions for that road. He must want to join McKeeva with chess pain and other stress symptoms. Just sayin. No disrespect intended.

    • Waste of time and money says:

      Omg he is a waster. 1960 solutions for 2023 and future road issues. He is a dinosaur. Does he have a degree in road construction or anything relevant?

      2
      1
  2. Street Light says:

    Anyone have a decent contact at NRA to get a street light put in? No one answers the general email (shock horror)!

    • Anonymous says:

      The decision ladder is now rigged to lead to Julianna’s line.

      2
      1
      • Anonymous says:

        @10:55 am Please get off here pushing your election rigging for Julianna stupidness.Try to find an article relating to her or her ministry if you are so set on her. Here you are merely an annoyance.

  3. Michael Day says:

    Old school and honest. I have respect for Mr Gilbert.
    He has ethics and experience in dealing with the non- ethical types that sadly are all too common.

    He wears his patriotic heart on his sleeve.

    Best of luck to you Sir. Don’t let the negativity get you down.

    15
    10
    • Anonymous says:

      Putting former civil servants as chair of these boards has to be better than appointments members of the private sector. Just look at Offreg CIAA Port etc

      10
      • Anonymous says:

        The port board is stuffed with Saunders and Mac lapdogs who are positioning themselves to run for office at the next elections.

      • Anonymous says:

        He was never a civil servant, he was a politician. Big difference. Thank you for once again demonstrating the need for civics studies in Cayman’s schools.

        2
        3
        • Anonymous says:

          Well you just exposed your lack of knowledge. For your information he was indeed a civil servant long before becoming a politician.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ministers appointing “yes men” to rubber stamp roles negates the purpose and public trust of pretending to have an independent oversight Board. It hardly matters what kind of guy he was or could be, if he’s sole agreed installation is to rig the voting results, governance, and decision making for outcomes in Minister Julianna’s favour. It’s a sham which brings disrepute to the nominee, Minister, government and jurisdiction. Any decisions against public prudence mean the government is open to getting sued as well. We pay twice.

      13
      3
      • Anonymous says:

        Mr. Gilbert McLean is not a yes man and anyone who thinks he is will be disappointed.

        5
        5
        • Anonymous says:

          Note: the Board didn’t nominate him from their members, the re-election hungry Minister installed him externally without a vote or any concern for their input. Our ACC is fast asleep.

          2
          1
      • Anonymous says:

        Omg the craziness is loose! 2:02 pm How in the world can any appointee as Chairman of the NRA, be able to rig an election to favour the Education Minister? I’ll quote exactly what you wrote, “It hardly matters what kind of guy he was or could be, if he’s sole agreed installation is to rig the voting results, governance, and decision making for outcomes in Minister Julianna’s favour. It’s a sham which brings disrepute to the nominee, Minister, government and jurisdiction.” Hate to break it to ya but the real sham must be hidden in the garbage you spewed out there! Kinda hilarious. A different kind of madness! Lol

        8
        4
        • Anonymous says:

          Functional independent Boards elect their own Chair from their members. That’s the key concept. In this case, the Minister with her own long history of self-dealing and pre-Election paving controversy is installing her own Chair to override that Board independence. It’s not a theoretical – she did it already, and it’s a corruption hallmark.

          • Anonymous says:

            10:49 am you are referring to private sector Boards, obviously. Right or wrong these government Boards have always been political appointees. Chairmen and members are all chosen by the Cabinet and then Gazetted for us minions to see.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.

    24
    1
    • Anonymous says:

      welcome to wonderland…

      5
      2
      • Anonymous says:

        plunderland

      • Anonymous says:

        You live here right? You enjoy our country, you benefit from this country right? Yet you are snide. Try to embrace the people who are from here. You might then drop your arrogant remarks.

        3
        5
        • Anonymous says:

          Huh? Only certain selected people are allowed to speak? What era are you living in? Truth is not arrogance, ignorance is arrogance and bliss, wherever you cone from.

          3
          1
  5. Fiona says:

    Really bad news. The LAST thing Chatman needs is more roads. Signing its own death warrant for the environment.
    Let’s go..p

    9
    8
  6. Anonymous says:

    Dipping in lots of pension boards making over a hundred K.

    Raise the min wage for the people? been about 50-plus years since that’s been done.

    NRA is a joke and always has been, just that older generation looking to make more money as they don’t give a shit about what the young gens want or the future of Cayman.

    Building more roads and making them wider isn’t gonna make the traffic that much better. There are going to be so many new complex’s and condos on that new road theirs going to be more people than ever.

    Doesn’t take an educated or qualified person to figure that out, but when a qualified one tells people lies they believe that what it’s ‘REALLY’ for.

    Wonderland for the arrogant n wealthy…

    13
    13
    • Anonymous says:

      Very recently there was a very high official who came here from another island and retired collecting probably the largest pension ever paid in these islands. I guess that was all fine and good with you all but Mr. Gilbert McLean, a Caymanian, is begrudged and being maligned for his pensions, which sum is but a drop in the bucket by comparison.Go get a life and be grateful for educated, able and willing Caymanians!

      13
      16
  7. Anonymous says:

    Quick question for Gilbert. What should I do if water comes in to my room?

    15
    2
  8. Anonymous says:

    free money making solutions:
    Sell goab and build new goab east of frank sound.
    or
    bring in car-pool lanes and congestion charge for single occupancy vehicles that come through hurleys roundabout morning or evening peak times.

    9
    1
  9. Anonymous says:

    Instead of bringing people to work and school why not bring work and school to the people? It will end up there anyway in the long run so it will be much cheaper to do it now.
    It saves time driving, vehicle operating costs and accidents and money building roads which are huge economic benefits.

    22
  10. Anonymous says:

    Sorry, Gilbert won’t help. No road extension needed. Limits on people and vehicle imports first. The people already know the true agenda behind this.

    24
    7
  11. Unhappy Caymanian says:

    Jobs for the boys

    Merit? ability? Open competition to find the best person?

    No thank you.

    We’re the Cayman Islands

    60
    4
    • Big Bobo In West Bay says:

      We are the Cayman Islands and the biggest problem we have is that our talent pool is just too small for so many positions. Furthermore, our education system does not turn out enough educated people with management skills.

      The answer might be to open the job market up for people who have lived for at least 15 years in the Cayman Islands and own property here. Therefore, we would open the competitive talent market for more senior management positions.

      There is a whole pool of people of talented and qualified management people living here who are simply being overlooked because they are not defined as
      “real Caymanians”.

      We need to open up our thinking on this issue.

      34
      14
      • Anonymous says:

        I was waiting to see when you foreign geniuses would decide that you and your friends are better qualified and able. Get over it because Gilbert McLean is an educated and experienced Caymanian who can do the job.

        14
        17
        • Anonymous says:

          Yes 4:46, and McKeeva Bush is one of our best and brightest too.

          A God in West Bay.

          12
          10
        • Anonymous says:

          Why did Caymanian voters reject him 3 times at the ballot booth if he was so wonderful?

          10
          3
          • Anonymous says:

            Where did you get 3x from? It was 2x that he was unsuccessful. Why? Because of the more recent large foreign makeup of that constituency. People who acquired Cayman Status by various means, and they chose someone whose ancestry and background was like theirs. A natural occurrence that we will see more of as that same foreign element continues with the takeover of these islands. The comments I am hearing now though concerning the replacement is very interesting.

            8
            4
      • Anonymous says:

        No, no there isn’t a whole pool of talented and qualified management people living here for 15+ years.

        The vast majority of people that have been here for 15+ years in management positions are people that couldn’t make it in the real world.

        Managers are bad enough when there’s a pool the size of the USA and UK to choose from, when all we have are the dregs that come here to make money and nothing else? spare me the nonsense we have a talented pool.

        12
        7
        • Anonymous says:

          Really? You think the Cayman Islands is the real world?

          6
          3
        • Joe The Mechanic says:

          6:15, If we set up a proper trade school in the Cayman Islands Caymanians could be well paid electricians, plumbers, air conditioning mechanics, carpenters, etc.

          Guess you don’t think all of those expats, some who have lived here for over 15 years doing those jobs are talented too? Couldn’t make it in your real world? Gimme a break Bobo.

          You are delusional about the situation related to employment here. Get over your superiority complex.

          We need a trade school now and less of a focus on hospitality training which most Caymanians don’t want to work in.

  12. Anonymous says:

    maybe hire someone with experience and qualifications to do the job????????
    welcome to wonderland…..zzzzzzzzz

    38
    6
    • Anonymous says:

      There is literally no one better as he was one of head of the NRA back in that day. So he is qualified…maybe do your research before you speak.

      7
      20
    • Anonymous says:

      Hire someone with experience and qualifications? What you really mean is to ignore the qualified and experienced Caymanian and hire a foreigner like you. No thanks. Mr Gilbert McLean is well qualified and experienced to do the job.

      9
      8
  13. Anonymous says:

    Hope someone publishes the names of the landowners that will now have access to their landlocked parcels. Interesting to see who benefits.

    59
    5
  14. XRebellion says:

    When you run an economy primarily to benefit the property industry – and cram ever more apartments and resorts now to spread East – a simple benefit like finding a bit of nature or space on the beach is going to become a bigger challenge.

    The simple solution is to stop overdevelopment so we do not further overwhelm local infrastructure and set aside land to not be developed.

    Thoughts? 🤔

    P.S. Yes, we need better public and active transport solutions.

    🟢Protect our environment
    🟠Halt overexpansion
    🔴Stop duplicity

    41
    2
  15. Anonymous says:

    Are any of these Govt and SAGC Board members accredited or registered with CIDA? How strange is it to appoint a former schoolteacher to the position of Chairman of a Board he doesn’t serve on? Doesn’t a well-functioning prudent Board appoint its own chair from its membership? So many questions.

    34
    5
    • Anonymous says:

      Please bear in mind that hardly any of the regular board members is smart enough to take up the chairmanship of any SAGC board. That requires someone who is well educated, smart and has good management skills. Mr. McLean fit the requirements and if you read the “story” listing out his qualifications and experience ayou would see that he is more than a ” past school teacher”. I am not knocking “school teachers” , where would all of us be without them? Most of these boards would benefit immensely if they had more ” past school teachers” For instance they would be able to read and understand the laws that they have to interpret and implement.

      16
      1
      • Anonymous says:

        10:03, Yes, Juju has done wonders for our education system as a Minister of Education for years and a former school teacher too.

        8
        4
        • Anonymous says:

          25 @ 8:47 pm – I agree with the point you’re trying to make but Julianna was not a “schoolteacher” – she was a high school gym teacher. Not exactly the same.

          4
          1
    • Anonymous says:

      Do your research and you will see he is more than qualified and has served on many boards.

      8
      15
      • Anonymous says:

        A Minister can perhaps put some names forward for suggestions for Board vacancies, but they can’t tell a functioning independent Board that they now have a new Chairman and to vote in line with whatever they say. That’s authoritarian regime stuff. There’s no point in pretending to have a functioning Board at that point, since there is only one opinion to be counted. Gilbert only has this kind of sham Board experience. Not independent Board experience. Most of CIG and SAGC Boards are shams, and this appointment of Chair by the Minister proves it.

        1
        3
        • Anonymous says:

          Your ignorance regarding the appointment of government Boards in the Cayman Islands is obvious. For your information members and Chairpersons are all chosen and appointed by the politicians.The sham in this matter is you dumbass.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Hmmmm…do land holdings and the locations thereof have to be declared by public Boards’ members?

    Asking for a brother.

    27
    2
    • Anonymous says:

      Agreed! Members of any Board must declare anything that could be a conflict of interest.Certainly no one with the potential to gain from this proposed road should be on that Board. In fact this should apply to any other Board as well.

  17. Anonymous says:

    The same old Lodgemen (Mechanics this time) recycling on Boards over and over, just moving the same pawns around on the boards. Pun intended.

    In this case, he’said being permitted to quadruple-dip from Government coffers. Civil service pension, Cabinet Minister pension and stipends from 2 Boards!

    And no one in the halls of power has any problem with that!! Wow!

    The generations of politicians and civil service leaders up to the mid-70s must be rolling in their graves! We have 2 living vestiges who took their integrity into the 80s but became unwanted by the shytstem.

    These bunch trample the memories and legacies of those departed!!

    40
    4
  18. Anonymous says:

    He also gets a pension as a retired Principal Secretary.

    A real nice tidy monthly sum when you add it all up!

    57
    4
    • Anonymous says:

      I bet if he was a foreigner you would not be so grudgeful. Smh

      18
      27
    • Anonymous says:

      You are right, he gets the pensions he worked hard to earn as a civil servant. The Permanent Secretary position he held was in the civil service but you don’t seem to understand that. He would also get the pension he earned for his long years of work as a Legislator (Member of Parliament) in service to these islands. So yes he collects the pensions he earned. Would you hateful dumbasses expect him to take on the Chairmanship of these two Boards for nothing because he is paid his earned pensions? I doubt that Mr. McLean is phased by the stupidity and hateful attacks being played out here. It is almost laughable.

      12
      4
  19. Anonymous says:

    Also Chairman of UCCI’s Board of Trustees. Excellent compensation benefit for Chairpersons appointed under PACT Govt!

    35
    4
    • Anonymous says:

      Another UDP appointment, let’s stop pretending “Pact” is anything other than a marketing front for Mac’s team .
      Surely Wayne Panton can see that now , his well intentioned Pact ideals have been hijacked .

      30
      6
      • Anonymous says:

        You mean his well intentioned power grab. Of course it backfired! Look at who he chose to help him gain that power. No surprises here!

  20. Nautical-one345 says:

    The EWA extension is sorely needed and long overdue! Whichever government is in power must face this head on, follow best engineering practices to allow for good drainage yes, and get this road built as a matter of urgency! For the entire Grand Cayman and especially for the eastern districts, to improve commute times and improved road safety also!

    21
    49
    • Anonymous says:

      Yes. The landowners desperately need their landlocked parcels unlocked at the public’s expense.

      51
      9
      • Anonymous says:

        Roads built by foreign labor to access land own by foreigners. Yay progress!

        17
        6
        • Anonymous says:

          Can you rustle up some locals willing to build the road? Nope, didn’t think so.

          6
          9
        • Anonymous says:

          Why on earth are you so blind to see that some of the biggest developers and land owners are Caymanian? It’s like you’re completely blinkered or in a state of denial. YOUR OWN PEOPLE HAVE SOLD YOU OUT.

          18
          3
    • Anonymous says:

      It’s the mind set of hurry come and gimme a new road that goes nowhere but stops full force at Hurleys round about. This is what got the country into trouble whereby Caymanians can’t even afford to live. Now you wish to destroy what’s left of our mangroves to fix nothing about our traffic situation. Let me guess you have a stake in this road being built?

      27
      4
    • Anonymous says:

      I do not support the building of this road because of the destruction we have been warned of. However, I punish every day on my commute from and return to my home in the eastern district area. Maybe Mr. McLean will be able to work with others and help us find a real solution to the traffic congestion without destroying our wetlands and creating bigger problems. A real solution that will not just move traffic further along and then suddenly come to another clogged area nearer to town.

      29
      3
    • Hubert says:

      Yes, Nautical-one345, we all need to get to the Hurley Roundabout congestion faster. A delight for you and everyone else.

      Perhaps you can explain how this is going to improve commute times to Georgetown.

      10
      2
      • Anonymous says:

        Spoiler alert. It will make it worse.

        13
        1
      • Nautical-one345 says:

        Overpass Hurley’s Roundabout! Move more businesses east, including many government entities.
        The narrow ribbon of a road through Bodden Town has long past it’s safe usefulness.
        It’s just a matter of environmentally friendly roads engineering.

        7
        4
  21. Anonymous says:

    Daily Double: What do paving, education, sister islands, and the former UDP party all have in common?

    39
    4
  22. Anonymous says:

    In a country where religious freaks have control, women have no chance.

    31
    19
  23. Anonymous says:

    Excellent man. He will do a great job!

    11
    50
  24. Anonymous says:

    Same old, same old.

    Can we please have some fresh faces, who seem to have a grip on reality?

    55
    5
    • Anonymous says:

      You people who came on here complaining, throwing slurs and criticizing Mr. Gilbert McLean are only exposing your own ignorance. Do any of you even know who originally created and set up the NRA? Those of us who pay attention know that, amongst his many achievements, it was, in fact, Mr.Gilbert McLean who did so. He, therefore, has an in-depth understanding of the intent and workings of the NRA and I commend MinisterJay Ebanks and the government for making this choice. Aside from Mr. McLean’s long and dedicated service to these islands at senior levels in government, he started his career as a school teacher. He is educated, experienced and able to perform well in this position as Chairman of the NRA.

      It really is shameful to read how some of you begrudge the pension he receives! The man worked hard as a Civil Servant and a Legislator in service to these islands. He earned the pension, which you use to criticize him for along with whatever stipend he may receive for the UCCI Chairmanship and now the NRA.

      Those of you calling for new faces should reflect on what was produced to answer that call last election.It is the overinflated salaries being received by them, salaries that they voted for themselves, that you all should be upset about.Mr. Gilbert McLean is a good and honest man who is known for his excellent work ethic and service to country. His kindness and assistance to the elderly and less fortunate in our society is a part of who he is, not some greedy character looking for a fast buck. He is also the founding Member of the CICSA Credit Union that many of you benefit from today. He also has the smarts and brass about him to take a stand and brazenly lead successful marches against injustices and wrongfulness in these islands. Marches for higher pay for those who were not being adequately compensated and were being treated unfairly. Yes, I know this gentleman because I worked in government when he did. And, no, he is not aware that I am writing this. These types of attacks and attempts at tearing down a person’s character, as displayed here, is some of what is so wrong in these islands. Please try to look for the good and provide encouragement instead.

      May God bless these Cayman Islands, my beloved homeland.

      26
      8
      • Anonymous says:

        God left the building when the dollar entered the room sweetie.

        11
        5
      • Anonymous says:

        So why not Brian Tomlinson then? Now that would have been a dynamite appointment.

        8
        3
      • Anonymous says:

        12:14, Guess your fellow Caymanians were not as impressed as you. When someone is rejected at the ballot box 3 times it tells you something in the Cayman Islands.

        3
        5
      • Anonymous says:

        Wow 12:14 am you did a nice promotion of Mr. Gilly. He must be pleased but maybe what you (and maybe him too) do not realize is that the qualities you set out is exactly why they chose him to do their dirty work! If he was really smart he would already know that, but then maybe he does. What he should do though is learn about some sidebar conversations that be going on. Might be very enlightening.

        4
        1
  25. Anonymous says:

    Julianna is obviously getting her team together to take over UDP after McKeeva pretends to step away. That includes this relic former HR manager of Quarry Products Ltd. These obsolete unqualified, uneducated cronies need Board stipends to bridge the losing years to the next election run. It’s terrifying and pathetic, yet somehow it gets past all the vested gatekeepers that should know better and be blowing their whistles for that era of reciprocal post-filling to stop.

    50
    7
  26. Anonymous says:

    You cry babies need to button it, we need these experienced people as they know how it works. Good job Honorable Premier!

    7
    44
  27. Anonymous says:

    So Gilbert, when will the third lane heading east past Maedac be open?

    29
    5
  28. Anonymous says:

    Dear Lord. Glad to see Wayne is re-starting the recycling program though.

    29
    3
  29. Anonymous says:

    “Although Premier Wayne Panton indicated in the wake of the 2021 General Elections that the PACT Government intended to seek out new faces and more diversity on local boards, new appointments have tended to be former politicians and familiar faces.”

    Are we surprised – these people have showed us their true colours for YEARS… it is just us fool fools who keep re-electing them.

    46

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.