The formal process leading to General Elections was launched Friday when the Governor, Mr. Bruce Dinwiddy, issued writs in the name of the Queen to Returning Officers for Cayman’s six electoral districts.
Each writ is signed by the Governor and marked with the public seal of the Cayman Islands.
It requires the Returning Officer to proceed to the nomination of candidates on Wednesday, 16 March at a specified place.
The writ then states that, if necessary, the Returning Officer is to cause election to be made on 11 May, between 7am and 6pm.
Both Nomination Day and Election Day were announced in early December, following the postponement of elections from 17 November because of Hurricane Ivan.
Supervisor of Elections Kearney Gomez said the clause mandating elections if necessary comes about because the number of candidates nominated in a district could be equal to the number of seats that district has in the Legislative Assembly. No election would then be necessary.
For example, Mr. John McLean was the only person nominated for the single-seat constituency of East End in 1984. He was therefore returned unopposed.
Mr. Gomez explained that the writs are not just ceremonial. They are formal documents that the Returning Officers must return to the Governor with the results of the election written on the other side. This must be done no later than two days after Election Day.
After Mr. Dinwiddy issued the writs he spoke briefly to the Returning Officers and their deputies, thanking them for their commitment to the election process.
The Returning Officers are: Mr. Delano Solomon, West Bay; Mr. Philip Barnes, George Town; Mr. Lee Ramoon, Bodden Town; Ms Jennifer Kaufman, North Side; Mr. Dale Banks, East End; Mr. Dave Talbert Tatum, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman.
Mr. Gomez especially thanked Mr. Tatum and Mr. Ernie Scott for making the trip over to Grand Cayman to receive the writ.
NOTE: Notices of Nomination Day are published in today’s Caymanian Compass on page 3.