Mac loses OBE after review by UK committee

| 14/08/2023 | 108 Comments
McKeeva Bush in parliament, Cayman News Service
McKeeva Bush in parliament, 26 April 2023

(CNS): The royal gong awarded to McKeeva Bush MP in 1997 has been revoked. The former speaker of parliament, who is facing two separate allegations of sexual abuse, claimed in a social media post that he had written to the UK Honours Forfeiture Committee to surrender his OBE. However, CNS reported in October last year that the award was already under review months before Bush made his own request.

The request to review the honour was made after Bush pleaded guilty to a drunken assault on the manager at the Coral Beach bar in February 2020 and sometime after Bush was accused of sexually assaulting two women at an official tourism ministry event in September last year.

Bush has pleaded not guilty to those allegations and is expected to face trial in October. Meanwhile, he has also pleaded not guilty to a historic sexual abuse allegation from 2000, including a charge of rape, claiming the accusation is politically motivated.

In a social media post this weekend, Bush claimed that he made the decision to give up the royal gong that he has held for 26 years because times have changed. “I found myself conflicted about retaining an award that doesn’t promote Caymanian excellence but rather one that many people believe celebrated imperialism and perpetuated a system of class and privilege,” Bush said on his Facebook page.

He claimed that in January, as a result of his own conflict, he had formally written “to the responsible bodies in the UK to surrender and to return my award and received confirmation last week that my request was approved by King Charles III”.

He made no mention of the existing review and did not say whether or not he made the decision to self-forfeit the award in anticipation of its formal revocation. In the post, Bush said that while he was “immensely proud at the time to receive my award”, he wanted to use his remaining years as a “representative of the people focused on celebrating our National Heroes and shaping the conversation on what makes a Hero”.

“Many of the challenges we face today are imported to our shores,” he said. “There are a lot of politics being pushed and played in our Islands combined with jealously and hatrage [sic]. I have never let politics get to a point where I seek to hurt anyone or their family. Sadly I recognize that there are people here in our islands, in the FCO and past governors who set out to hurt people anyway they can. I have been and still Is [sic] a target for them.”

Bush said that he had campaigned for and secured a local honours system when he was premier and that the world is a different place today than it was 26 years ago, as he stressed the need to promote local honours rather than the UK awards. “Let us use this time to build our own institutions to develop our own people to better position the Cayman Islands to face the challenges ahead,” he concluded.

Anyone can make a complaint about an honoree in relation to a royal award if they believe the person has brought the honours system into disrepute. The committee then considers the reasons presented. It is especially likely to strip people of honours when the individual has been found guilty of a criminal offence.

The names of complainants are not revealed, but CNS was able to confirm that a request had been made to the committee before October 2022 to review Bush’s honour.

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Comments (108)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    His actions were unbecoming of someone who was awarded such an honor, though I do not believe in this honoring of politicians /government officials as occurs in UK and its territories and to some extent in former colonies.
    Those are the representatives/employees of people not their masters

  2. No justice nor peace says:

    Review of those who have Justices of Peace for life status need to done so convicted people and others mixed up in international bank scandals and local fraudulent activity are removed or struck of the JB register Pronto. This appointment is a privilege and these appointees need to be above reproach not handed this title by nepotism and favouritism as it appears to be the current situation in Cayman.

  3. Anonymous says:

    McKeeva Trump

  4. Anonomouse says:

    OBE in UK has always stood for “Other Buggers Efforts”

    • Anonymous says:

      I beg your pardon. During the war, my uncle was an RAF pilot whose mission was to fly a plane to Canada but was shot down by enemy fire.

      The plane had already caught fire and he maneuvered a crash landing into a snow covered mountain. Despite his own injuries, he and his crew saved 81 lives. He was both burnt with 3rd and 4th degree burns and frost bitten.

      Although he survived but was totally disfigured, he suffered countless surgeries and skin grafts, he was never able to fly again but fought against his illness and pain to manage ground operations for BOAC and then BA.

      A few months before he passed away from cancer as a result of his injuries, he was given the OBE by Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip. It was an extraordinary recognition of his life, his duty to his country and bravery but for our family, it is an honor for a man, husband and father to have never given up, to fight his pain and continue to work and be relevant right up to the end.

      It is just not “other buggers efforts”.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Fi, fie, fo… low will he go…

  6. Anonymous says:

    What a sad case of Cayman. Anyone who voted for this man, should be ashamed of themselves.

  7. Kurt christian says:

    God save the King !

  8. Anonymous says:

    Imperialism … class and privilege, these are all brand new concepts I suppose. He had every opportunity to give it back over the past 25 years, or simply not take it to begin with. That’s simply his PR machine trying to work redeem him knowing it was going to be stripped. We’re not all that thick.

    • Anonymous says:

      His supporters are incredibly thick.

    • Anonymous says:

      His voters are however.

    • Anonymous says:

      Who in their right mind would believe that he voluntarily turned it in.?. He was too eager and happy to tack it on the end of his signature ! Is he still using “Dr. The Honourable ” if so that should also be stripped away,

  9. Anonymous says:

    God save the King !

  10. Anonymous says:

    How he ever received an OBE in the first place is beyond comprehension.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Why is a convicted criminal still eligible to be a Justice of the Peace?

  12. Anonymous says:

    Speaking about designation letters, will McKeeva Bush now surrender his self-ascription of the honorary $1 million baksheesh doctorate from University College of the Caribbean (UCC) that was retracted by the institution?

    How is it that some Members of Parliament are Honorable (forever), and others not? Maybe time to revisit that ascription too.

  13. Moi says:

    Was at Fosters, West Bay, last week. Mac came in. You should have seen the people treating him like a god. Back slapping, bowing, the lot. It was so embarrassing and quite laughable ! Clowns worshipping clowns. Awful!

    • Anonymous says:

      Kind of like MAGAT’s in US worshiping Mr Orange Cheeto Head, tRump

      • Anonymous says:

        Trump built a wall to provide employment opportunities for Americans. My bobo here in Cayman gave away over 3000 status grants and took employment away from caymanians. See the difference?

    • Anonymous says:

      I wish I was there. I would have paid for his groceries and been granted status there and then.

    • Anonymous says:

      The man is totally devoid of shame.
      Has no concept of right and wrong.
      Having (probably) arranged his own OBE award, he now says it doesn’t promote “Cayman excellence”..”Promotes imperialism”..
      In his illiterate way, he blames a past governor and the FCO who are “out to hurt people”. Never once making any reference to his years of highly questionable behavior.
      Go away Mac, for the sake of Cayman..Go away.

    • Anonymous says:

      Those fans were the Jamaicans thanking him for status!

    • Anonymous says:

      On a personal level, Mac is a quite likable guy. Great to have a drink with (just keep women at arm’s length when Mac has his beer goggles on). He is jovial and funny. Has a very folksy outlook. I always slap him on the back when I greet him. However, I would not argue against his sentence if he is found guilty. But in regard to politics, I would never, ever, ever, everrrr, vote for the person Mac has become. Or Panton for that matter. The Cayman Islands can certainly do better for its leader.

  14. Anonymous says:

    a sad reflection on democracy in cayman and the limited intelligence of the electorate.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Elephant in the room: “Many of the challenges we face today are imported to our shores”

    Isn’t he the one responsible for this?

    • Anonymous says:

      He is, and his handlers…

      • Anonymous says:

        His main no 1 handler, who is the first person they call when Mac is in trouble ( The falling down drunk kind)…. is going to run in West Bay next election.
        Be afraid Cayman.

  16. Anonymous says:

    It sure took a long time for the UK to realize that he was undeserving.

  17. Anonymous says:

    O.B.E. = Odour of Bad Egg….

  18. Anonymous says:

    What was common and usual is not accepted today. It’s nearly impossible to change someone’s believes and habits once he/she is past 40.
    Abuse, in any form and shape, was never accepted in any society.

  19. Anonymous says:

    What is OBE? Don’t suggest I google.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahhaha……Jesus!………….best one I have seen today……….

  21. Anonymous says:

    It’s all about him again isn’t it. Can’t help himself and must remain in the spotlight. What a narcissist. Promotes himself as the righteous upstanding example of caymanian integrity yet can’t keep his hands to himself at every opportunity. He is filling up his retirement years with reminders of his past misdemeanors so that we’ll never think of him in a good light again, right up to his passing. Sad little man.

  22. Anonymous says:

    You can’t fire me, I quit.

  23. Anonymous says:

    This guy is such a freeking tool, – casually snubbing an OBE like it’s no concern to him but instead a favour says the same fella clinging to a faux doctorate and bestowing honourable upon himself for life and when the h*** did he earn the MSc, – desperate, self important loser 🙄

  24. banger's digitz says:

    Dip it in molten bronze the way folks used to do to baby shoes and plant it upside down in the middle of hell.

  25. Ronald McDonald says:

    In the last 10 years 8 other OBEs revoked. Mac joins an exclusive club, including 5 sex offenders, 1 for perverting the course of justice, and a fraudster – wait a minute, do I see a pattern?

  26. Anonymous says:

    What, they took it back after e had already surrendered it? Or was it the other way around 😉

  27. Anonymous says:

    Maybe if he starts penning his bio immediately, which should aptly be named “What Makes a Scoundrel” then he might recoup some sliver of credibility? What a disgrace, you’d think he would just shut up and let his OBE go without putting his own lèse-majesté spin on it.
    Does anyone know if his name appears on Cayman’s Wall of Honour in Hero’s Square? If by some grave mistake like his OBE it needs to be chiselled off and replaced on a new Wall of Dishonour.
    So many bad monikers fit this reprobate. We’ve had a few that stuck over the years now he might soon earn another one if it’s not fitting enough already, the “Mac Daddy of Who’s Your daddy”.
    Here’s hoping justice prevails and his victims are vindicated. Any Cabinet members that still support him need to take permanent leave from politics too.
    Good riddance!🤞

    • Anonymous says:

      McKeeva Bush’s name, likely with the OBE letters, is presented on a few plaques around the island, at places he opened. I imagine those will be replaced, eventually (?) ….but knowing CIG efficiency, I won’t hold my breath.

      • Anonymous says:

        You know, HRH Prince Philip and HRH Queen Elizabeth II protocol portraits still hang and greet all incoming passengers at airport and various government buildings. Philip died on April 9, 2021, almost 2.5 years ago. Don’t we have a full-time protocol department?

  28. Anonymous says:

    Why didn’t he put it up for sale, like everything else he ever had temporary control over?

  29. Anonymous says:

    aka he was likely given notice by the relevant honours committee that they intended to revoke the award

  30. Anonymous says:

    A beaken of light, a trailblazer, firm yet soft, assertive yet compassionate, some see similarities to Denzel others to 007, indeed heros are celebrated yet a day comes to hand in their cape. I am behooved with emotions and yet look to the horizon yonder on Seven Mile and hear the song Return of the Mack goosebumps and shivers up my spine like watching the Titanic sink my heart will go on oh but the Mack Daddy boat may still have gas in the tank to plop to the surface once again.

  31. Anonymous says:

    delusional to the end.
    hus remarks are insulting to the crown….
    any comment Wayne or governor?

  32. Anonymous says:

    mckeeva….perfect example of why Cayman should never consider independence

    • Vices says:

      No. Perfect example of why neither the crown nor the FCO is the friend of Cayman or her people. They let him run roughshod over Cayman right up until he put the crown’s own interests in danger when he created a diplomatic kerfuffle between the UK and China. Yes, he is the FFB and far worse, but the FCO had no problem with letting him destroy Cayman’s future from the inside out while they, and probably including you, have destroyed Cayman from the outside in. The pig in a wig is a symptom of your own system.

    • Anonymous says:

      Saunders, Seymour and Kenneth Bryan are three more examples of why Cayman cannot be independent.

  33. Sunrise says:

    Here we go again, another insult to the people of the Cayman Islands!! How can this man have any dignity left? You know that these allegations, and him having to give up the royal gong award is all false, don’t you?😃 The Pact government, should put in a vote of ‘no confidence’ against him in the House of Parliament, and have him removed permanently!! But, where will that leave them? There is no dignity left in the House of Parliament, it is only about the power now. No wonder outsiders are coming here and laughing at our elected members, there is no dignity left in them. I am fast becoming ashamed that I am fifth generation Caymanian, my dad and mom is turning over in their graves I am sure, to see what Cayman has become!! But, I am sure that people will be showing up by his house this week, to collect their school supplies and giving him high praise!! Get the FACTS Cayman, we can still make ourselves proud in the future.

  34. Anonymous says:

    The sooner this man is gone from our political landscape the better. I won’t hold my breath.

  35. Anonymous says:

    Wish he would renounce his seat in the Assembly!

  36. Anonymous says:

    And I’m one stupid statement Mac has devalued the local honours and brought shame to anyone who has received one! His claim that the local honours are better suited to recognize Caymanians achievements is marred by his past and present behaviors. I for one would not accept a national honour unless he also disassociates himself from that as well!

  37. Anonymous says:

    If I read between the lines:

    UK Honours Forfeiture Committee contacts (HFC) Big Mac to advise they will be stripping him of his OBE.
    Big Mac asks what his options are?
    HFC says you can gracefully surrender your OBE before we announce… or experience the fall out of us announcing.

    Of course Big Mac’s ego couldn’t have that so he offered to ‘surrender’ it to save public shame.

    Hip hip hooray- Big Mac no longer carries the OBE. Can we work on stripping him of ‘the Honourable’ as well?

  38. Anonymous says:

    Fox and the Grapes.

  39. Anonymous says:

    But yet on these shores he’s treated like a hero and elected to senior positions in parliament. Shameful.

  40. Anonymous says:

    It is still a national disgrace and embarrassment that this man represents us.

  41. So says:

    So when he given the heads up he was losing the OBE he announced he wanted to give it up?

  42. Anonymous says:

    Compared to some of the flawed people in the UK that retain their honours, Bush is Boy Scout! Nevertheless though, it is long overdue that he has this revoked after his conduct to that poor lady at the restaurant.

    • Anonymous says:

      Not entirely sure about you’re first point. When you stack up the list of convictions, charges, allegations and shady dealings that are well known in the local community but never made it to an official investigation, Mac is on at least a par with the bentest on the honours list.
      You’re second point is absolutely valid and he should have been completely removed from the public sphere immediately after that. but this is Wonderland.

  43. Anonymous says:

    hilarious, he thought he got ahead of everyone by giving it back for “imperialism” reasons. LOL

  44. Anonymous says:

    What a disgusting individual, very glad he is no longer holding an OBE, just a shame he was able to return it before it was taken from him.

    The man is a completely delusional, shameless, women beating, (alleged) sex offender and the sooner he is out of politics and Government, the better.

    It is high time those who support this scumbag, stop, and see him for what he really is.

  45. Anonymous says:

    Not very clear who did this revoking and whether it is official.

  46. Elvis says:

    Its only. Cayman who wont do anything about his out of control antics it-seems

  47. Anonymous says:

    This man really think we gonna believe his story that he conveniently gave up this OBE coz it’s imperialistic!?

    Maybe when he delivers me a new fridge and some CuC vouchers then I am open to the idea

  48. Anonymous says:

    Great!! McKeeva knew his OBE was at stake so he decided to “turn in in”!! BS! Just like Trump knew he was guilty of offences and would be charged, so he declared as a candidate before the charges hit! Just to present a massive complication! At least Mac’s is not complicated – take it away!!

    My father of dear memory and some of his contemporaries were awardees of the OBE for their dedicated services to these Islands. To have McKeeva share in their honours, after all his social and legal drama, was simply insulting!!



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