It’s time for change

Not a proponent of conspiracy theory myself (and we were all entertained by Mel Gibson and Julia Roberts in Conspiracy Theory) but if I did not know better I could be led to believe based on the recent distasteful sequence of events that there is a deliberate attempt by someone to destabilise our country.

When in the history of crabs have we ever witnessed the shambles in which our law and order has found itself?

Look at the way in which this whole fiasco is being mismanaged. Right now nearly half of our judiciary is under investigation (and we are told for different reasons).

We have a commissioner of police that, although not arrested or questioned (and was allowed to return to the United Kingdom for family reasons when his chances for return are minimal to none), is subject to questioning for 1) criminal investigation into the alleged misconduct of a public office; 2) disciplinary proceedings for failing to return to the island after being asked three times by the Governor; and 3) the dratted helicopter acquisition.

The Governor concedes that this is “an unprecedented investigation involving senior members of the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service..” and the arrest .. of Justice Alexander Henderson”.

The Governor, in the same breath, continues that he “wants to assure the financial community and our international stakeholders that the Cayman Islands remain a stable jurisdiction with a sound judicial system. I reiterate that none of these actions have any reference to our financial industry and are not related to any judgments delivered by Justice Henderson. It is about maintaining the reputation and integrity of the Cayman Islands; and to ensure the highest level of ethical behaviour for those holding public office.”

But in bringing the law and order of the Cayman Islands literally to its knees what does the Governor mean when he said that this process is to “maintain the reputation and integrity” of these islands.

Whose reputation?

The reputation of these islands or his?

And I ask the question because there is a certain irony; these areas of responsibility under our constitution are not the responsibility of our elected leaders but that of the Governor and by extension the United Kingdom.

These are also areas under which there is literally no transparency and effective accountability and we the people of the Cayman Islands are asked to blindingly rely on the discretion and good will of the office of the Governor.

And perceive what has transpired as a mere aberration and not deliberate but to maintain the reputation and integrity of these islands. Say what you may about the PPM and its questionable administrative performance over the past few years but this is one matter that they are not responsible for under our constitution.

So I ask, what is the message that is being communicated to the Caymanian people? And based on the facts to date who has our best interest at heart? And we have to ask this question in the context of our experience, the situation that we witnessed with Messrs Ballantyne and Gibbs regarding the EuroBank case.

Unfortunately the mired situation in which the PPM administration has found itself does not bode well for these islands either. Caymanians do not know what headlines they will awake to in the mornings in light of the relentless negative headlines, which consistently question the ability and integrity of our leadership. This is no joking matter because the same way that we read them each morning, so does the international community that we compete with and those who are our clients.

The only loser in this equation is this community.

Finally, I would ask our community to consider the above in the context of the current constitutional debates.

They are timely and very important.

They are about the type of governance that we want for ourselves and our children.

They will ensure that no one can dodge responsibility and bring about true transparency, responsibility and accountability.

Theresa Pitcairn

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