Addressing corruption a priority for Miller

| 10/03/2021 | 34 Comments
Miller at the North Side Chamber Forum

(CNS): The most serious national issue for the Cayman Islands right now is corruption, Ezzard Miller said at the Chamber of Commerce Candidates Forum in North Side on Tuesday. The candidates were asked about the priorities the next government must address, and, bucking the trend of answers from his challengers in the district that traffic or education are the most important issues, Miller pointed out that until the issue of corruption is addressed, no other policy changes can succeed. “If we do not stamp out corruption in this country… it will decay into a Third World country,” he said.

Appearing alongside the three candidates hoping to unseat the experienced and outspoken incumbent. Miller said corruption was undermining access to social welfare and jobs in the private and public arenas and that the current coalition government itself was a corruption of politics. He also spoke about the need to encourage local entrepreneurs and to address the “morass” of the current health insurance, as he made a pitch for the role of health minister should he find himself in the next government.

Miller’s main challenger in this four-way race is believed to be Jay Ebanks, as he appears to have the backing of the PPM/Coalition, but it was Justin Ebanks, who came fourth in the 2017 four-way race with only 12.63% of the vote, who had the better night among the challengers.

While Miller’s experience and knowledge placed him in a position to address the questions competently, his main rival at times appeared unprepared and unaware of the current situation on many key issues, especially the dump, despite stating it would be a priority for him. Debra Broderick also struggled to find a moment during the evening to shine and, like Jay Ebanks, at times seemed ill-prepared for the questions.

Justin Ebanks took a leaf out of Tony Blair’s 1997 election campaign, adopting the slogan of “education, education, education”. But despite his competent performance, the young hopeful may have lost the support of environmentalists with his policy position on developing North Side’s pristine habitat. Ebanks spoke on several occasion about the need for more roads so that people can access the as yet untouched land that is locked away in the district to make a living or build homes.

At this forum the candidates were more supportive of the Civil Partnership Law than those in East End, with Miller emphatically offering his support. The other three shuffled around the issue but they all managed not to condemn members of the LGBT community, with Broderick going as far as pointing out that we should love the LGBT community just the same.

Meanwhile, the issue of the coalition and alliances came up at this forum but no one made any commitments about who they actually will be working with.

Miller has stated on numerous occasions he will not form a government with McKeeva Bush. However, he pointed out that there is a big difference between working with a government, as he always has done, and agreeing with one so as to undermine one’s own principles. He said he would not join any government that does not have the principles and commitment to Caymanians that he said representatives should have.

“We must not confuse ‘working with’ and ‘agreeing with’. We have so polluted and corrupted the process of a coalition government… with what we did the last time,” he said, as he explained the wider Westminster principles of a coalition government. “We are all still waiting to see that secret agreement that was signed by the Unity government.”

Justin Ebanks and Broderick said they would consult with the people but were not very specific. Jay Ebanks said he wanted to be part of the next government, but did not directly indicate he was supporting the government alliance.

See the full forum on YouTube below:


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Comments (34)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Corruption running wild, but who to prove it ?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Tackling the warehouses of documented corruption, ineptitude, and malfeasance Miller regularly reviewed from his front seat as PAC gatekeeper, would seem to have been a lowest quartile priority for him. Since October 2015, Ezzard was the standing Chairman of PAC; the public trustee that was supposed to be asking the tough questions on public spending this past half-decade. He was literally the person wearing the whistle. What does he think he’d any better, if given another shot at doing what was supposed to be his job?

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  3. Anonymous says:

    North Side has produced the best debates, so far, in my opinion. Both the Chamber Forum and the Rooster debate surprisingly impressed me. I haven’t been a big fan of Ezzard but he hit the nail on the head quite a few times, which caught be off-guard. As for Justin, well he has got to be the strongest of the challengers. He’s articulate, nuanced, and provides solutions. In fact, he and Ezzard were the only two who attempted to provide solutions throughout their debates, instead of merely parroting the concerns that we all know exist. I really hope the people of North Side give Justin a chance or if not they return Ezzard those are the only two real choices in my humble opinion.

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  4. enough with thugs and gangsters says:

    Mr. Miller is right: Corruption is an evil, and it results in citizens having no respect for their leaders — because their leaders don’t deserve it. The people are smart enough to guess what’s going on behind the curtain. Come on, members of Parliament: Get your hands out of the cookie jar and start acting like statesmen and stateswomen instead of thugs and gangsters.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Well, yes the public should be given honorary PHDs in BS detection, and patience. Yet, let us not forget it was none other than Ezzard that was the standing Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee since October 2015. He had a front row seat, with the whistle in his hand the whole time. Other than recent Tim Adam fiasco, what has he done to hold ANYONE else to account? If we are willing to listen to anyone humming our favorite tune, maybe some of us still don’t merit those PHDs after all…

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  5. Anonymous says:

    Don’t like Ezzard’s soft stance on Same-sex issues. But he has never fully sided with a PARTY. And I think his independence and watchdog approach against corruption, is what really makes him shine out from the other candidates.

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    • stop the gay-bashing says:

      I APPLAUD Ezzard’s stance on same-sex issues. Same-sex marriage (SSM) is coming, and it’s a good thing, because Inclusion benefits ALL of us. If you don’t like SSM, then don’t marry a same-sex partner. But don’t you dare put me down for my marriage to my husband, who is the same gender as myself. Why do you have the ridiculous notion that your happiness as a straight person is somehow reduced because of my happiness as a gay man? For heaven’s sake, get a life, and stop denigrating the gay community.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I don’t care who marries who; I care that in ten years’ time we have quality education, pension, insurance and a dignified retirement option.

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      • on the same team says:

        OK, so if, as you say, you don’t care who marries who, then apprently you support equality for all. Thank you. Much appreciated. And in regard to the things you say that you DO care about, rest assured that everyone, including the gay community, cares deeply about those same things. Wow — it looks like we’re on the same team here!

  6. G money says:

    My boy Jay can dust out JustIN who is all gab nothing to him big truck and big talk Goooooo Jay da real Mayor of North Side!

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  7. Chris Johnson says:

    Having been in Cayman since 1968 I know a few things. Ezzard is dead right. The corruption and nepotism here is huge. I see many situations and often report them. Unfortunately on more that one occasion the fuzz have told me that I do not know what fraud is.
    I think the fuzz need get some experts.
    Fraud is rampant here and often perpetrated by politicians.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Chris, just checking. Have you reported corruption to the ACC? Not sure what sort of corruption you would have reported to the police?

  8. Anonymous says:

    Has anyone-anyone-seen Justin WORKING on the ground with the NS people? At the school, or with the elderly or with the youth or doing beach clean ups or visiting the clinic to see what the issues are? AH is great with words, but ask Prospect if they feel he represented them. RM is great with numbers, ask his people if they saw him in four years. MacBeater claims he works for his people, but he is a convict and therefore not MP material. Be careful, people. Not everything that shines is gold.

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  9. Anonymous says:

    Ezzard couldn’t address an envelope.

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  10. Anonymous says:

    If Miller is so anti-corruption, why hasn’t he signed and submitted the Dec 26 treating event complaint that would remove his rival (and bane of Cayman) from politics forever? Why is his chief complaint that he doesn’t have matching gifting resources at his disposal? From all accounts, he’s a walking-talking contradiction sharing all the wiring defects of the main party rivals. Prove us wrong Mr Miller.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Well said!

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    • BeaumontZodecloun says:

      He is the ONLY one who has done ANYTHING to address Bush’s status and antics. The ONLY one, among all the other MPs. I only wish I lived in his voting district.

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  11. Excellence says:

    I don’t know Mr. Ebanks, I am not from NS, but the least I can says is ” I am proud of you young man” now to the NS people with capital sense please do the right thing and vote for Mr. Ebanks (Justin that is),
    he deserves the chance after Tuesdays night chamber forum, as he gave it all so passionately from his heart and head!
    no pen, no papah boeboe!

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    • Anonymous says:

      The first debate that illustrated we need national elections. I would see Ezzard and Justin as two to get my vote. Justin could then understudy Ezzard, as an example.

      I was impressed with this young man.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    The debate sealed the deal for our family’s vote. Justin all the way!
    Justin was the only competent speaker. I don’t know how Jay got so many votes last time, he’s like a fish out of water.
    Ezzard who?
    Not sure who the lady in the glasses was, I think she wandered in off the street and sat in that chair by accident from the way she answered some of those questions.

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    • Anonymous says:

      So lets just hope Justin won’t be seduced to work with the unmentionable honwobble in return for dubious rewards.
      Need your promise Justin.

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      • Anonymous says:

        He has integrity so no need to start throwing mud or questioning him along these lines. There are plenty in the opposition as well as Government that are suspect and questionable. The alliances with persons who can made vile and unfounded threats against the Governor because of baseless accusations against his wife, have not been forgotten. People aren’t stupid. You haven’t walked away from him instead you’ve pulled closer. We are woke to you and your ongoing slanderous statements that have no basis whatsoever. Shows how much integrity you have. And by the way his arrest for those threats are in the press so I am assuming there is no reason this cannot be printed.

  13. Alex says:

    Anyone watching the forum could blatantly see Justin Ebanks did not flintch around all three candidates. Justin was so well versed, not only compared to the other three candidates, by rather any politician currently campaigning. The innate ability he has is highly uncommon and quite intimidating for any opponent having to speak on a forum with him. I guess the other three were taking notes (literally) all night. Well done Justin –

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  14. Anonymous says:

    Justin did not only have “the better night of the challengers” he also addressed other critical issues that are important to many. At no time did he suggest to ruin natural habitat. Many people own land in landlocked areas and need to provide shelter for their families. Surrounding land owners refuse to provide access and this has nothing to do with interfering with natural habitat. He spoke about protecting the wetlands. He also addressed the need to implement the Code of Ethics for MPs.

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  15. Anonymous says:

    Justin, Justin!! I repeated that name 100 times today. I don’t know you personally but am so proud of you. North Side you have produced a WORLD CLASS politician. Tony Blair can’t hold a step before you. You were amazing and truly a breath of fresh air, you actually gave Caymanians hope for the future and a light at the end of our dark tunnel. What’s pity we could not clone you as Cayman need MORE JUSTINS now. From the choices for this election you would make the best Premier. Young man May God be with you. North Side the Island needs JUSTIN please vote him Cayman needs him.

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  16. Anonymous says:

    If Ezzard has evidence of corruption (he doesn’t) , he is obligated to report it to the relevant authorities. Otherwise, he is just running his disagreeable mouth as usual (he is).

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    • Alex says:

      Wouldn’t he have an obligation as a citizen to report it pursuant to the Anti-corruption Law? Anyhow, Ezzard was boring as usual to listen to, because having so many years in office and never having power to affect material change speaks to his leading abilities just like how he did not lead last night.

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      • Anonymous says:

        5)A public officer or a member of the Legislative Assembly who has reasonable cause to believe that another public officer or a member of the Legislative Assembly has—(a)solicited;(b)accepted or obtained; or(c)agreed to accept or obtain;any loan, reward, advantage or other benefit in contravention of any provision of this Law, shall report such belief to the Commission and shall provide the name, if known, of the person who gave, promised or offered such loan, reward, advantage or other benefit to the public officer or the member of the Legislative Assembly.

        (6)A person who fails, without reasonable excuse, to comply with subsection(5) commits an offence and is liable on conviction on indictment to a fine of ten thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term of two years or to both.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Look what happened to David Legge when he suggested corruption was prevalent and pervasive. (It is – we just don’t recognize it for what it is).

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        • Anonymous says:

          I guess you can just say that it’s prevalent and pervasive without any proof! How on earth would you know that it is pervasive and prevalent unless you have been a party to it or have seen the proof that it rises to this level but yet failed to report it. BTW when corruption convictions were secured people like you would be the first to complain for whatever your reason. Not surprising.

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        • Anonymous says:

          the only issue with Legge’s comment was that he said we all are corrupt. But he was right about the corruption.

    • Anonymous says:

      Moron! Follow the news or take your head out of that pretty NS sand! Just last week Ezzard reported suspected/alleged corruption at Turtle Center to the “relevant authorities”!! Did he not?!! And he’s done this before – remember OfReg recently?

      Ezzard is the ONLY choice in NS! I’m in WB stuck with few good choices.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Everyone knows there is corruption,but they can’t prove it, like if a car passes your house going 100 miles per hour, you know its speeding, but you can’t prove it

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