New Year Message from MLA Ezzard Miller

My fellow Caymanians, and in particular, the constituents of North Side, I take this opportunity to wish you all a happy, joyous and prosperous New Year.

As we come to the end of another joyous Christmas celebration, we are thankful that Caymanians can still enjoy the freedom to celebrate the birth of Christ and all that this season represents. For us Caymanians, paramount in that observance is the marvelous story of the birth of Christ, as told in St. Luke’s Gospel chapter 2.

In keeping with my Christmas message focused as it was on engaging our families, I invite each of you to resolve, that in the new year, you will be more involved with your immediate families, your extended families and your community family. In doing so, we each can contribute to enhancing life in the Cayman Islands for all who call these islands home.

Toward that goal, I commend to you the principles of honesty, integrity, and commitment, infused with faith, hope, charity and love. Equipped with these noble qualities and attitudes, we can still make the Cayman Islands the best place on earth to live, work and raise a family.

At this reflective and often sensitive time of year, for those amongst us that have suffered the loss of family members during this year we again offer our sympathy and sincere condolences. I pray that almighty God will give each of you the fortitude to endure and overcome your loss.

Even as we reflect on the past year, the New Year 2018, with its opportunities and challenges, is upon us.
I encourage all Caymanians to rely on our Christian heritage, our beliefs and principles to deal with both the opportunities and challenges ahead.

We, the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly, see some definite areas of opportunity for Caymanians in 2018. These include:

  • the opportunity to really improve and enhance education for Caymanians
  • the opportunity to improve job security, satisfaction and reward for Caymanians
  • the opportunity to reduce crime and provide a safe and secure environment in which we can all live and work
  • the opportunity to finally, properly and adequately provide healthcare, income replacement, and positive social interactions for our senior citizens. We must accord our seniors the respect, enjoyment and appreciation they deserve, for the service they have given to our country.
  • the opportunity to provide an improved quality of life for all Caymanians through proper physical and economic planning. This should place Caymanians at the forefront of both the financial and tourism industries, not only as token employees but also as owners and entrepreneurs.

In order to embrace these opportunities Caymanians will have to overcome some challenges, prime among which are:

  • The challenge of governing and legislating for the benefit of all Caymanians and not only for a selected minority of Caymanians or inward investors.
  • The challenge of completely overhauling and improving our pension, healthcare and employment legislative frameworks in the interest of Caymanians.
  • The challenge of producing a revised physical development plan, coupled with a supportive economic plan, for the benefit of all Caymanians
  • The challenge of making Caymanians first in Cayman
  • The challenge of returning the Good Ship Cayman to the control of Caymanians, for the benefit of all Caymanians, and of giving each and every Caymanian the opportunity to fully participate in the Cayman economic miracle in line with their full potential and God-given talents
  • The challenge of creating the environment for the introduction of an Integrity Commission that will stamp out corruption at all levels of society, including in the political arena, the civil service, and the private sector.

I affirm that the Opposition is committed to embracing these opportunities and working to overcome the challenges in order to improve the quality of life for all Caymanians.

We further pledge to continue to work with you the people and to give each of you the chance and responsibility necessary to becoming fully involved in the process of governing.

We will do so, as we did in identifying the issues in education—by visiting and talking with the persons on the front line in our schools—which led us to making education our number one priority.

Accordingly, we will early in the new year begin conducting a series of fact finding meetings with all stake holders, in all districts, as we seek your assistance in finding workable, affordable and acceptable solutions to overcoming the challenges and seizing the opportunities.

The Opposition is committed to a new form of governance founded on “Participatory Democracy,” through which all Caymanians will be given every opportunity to participate in the decisions of Government. That is your democratic right.

We will work to correct the impediments created by the current coalition government made up of the remnants of the PPM, the remnants of the UDP/CDP and some Independents.

This resulted from the coalition passing into law a 2018/19 budget that offers neither hope nor opportunity for Caymanians.

Unfortunately, this budget relies on incremental increases or reductions in the same old tried and failed strategies, while avoiding any bold new strategies that might succeed in making life better for Caymanians.

We should not let this discourage us, however. While we will have to live within the constraints of this law for the next two years, but, there is much that we, the Opposition, with your help and support can do to influence necessary changes by the government for the betterment of Cayman and Caymanians.

So, despite the challenges, the Opposition strongly believes that if we work together in a spirit of cooperation with you the people and the government we can collectively make 2018 an exceptional year for all Caymanians.

This must be our mission—to improve the lives of all Caymanians in spite of their social and economical position.

Indeed, charity, which follows faith and hope, must begin at home.

As we hold these goals in our line of vision, we wish for all Caymanians a most prosperous, happy and satisfying 2018.

May God in his infinite wisdom and mercy continue to bless each of us and these beloved Cayman Islands.

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