Editor’s note: The Caymanian Compass is offering a Meet the Candidates feature on the front page introducing Member of the Legislative Assembly candidates for the 20 May General Election. Candidates are asked to fill out a form and return it with a colour photograph to the Compass. Deadline for submissions is 9am Thursday 14 May.
W. Burns Conolly is an independent candidate for the District of George Town.
An architect by trade, Mr. Conolly’s believes education is critical to the future of the Cayman Islands.
‘I believe that the single most important goal of any country is to educate its people,’ he said. ‘We need not only to educate the youth, but also provide opportunities for teacher’s, technical and vocational as well on-the-job training.
‘I believe that education should not end when one leaves school. We need to ensure that our people have all of the required tools to be productive citizens.’
Employment and human resources is another important issue facing country, in Mr. Conolly’s opinion.
‘I believe that job creation for Caymanians will be the number one priority of the next government,’ he said. ‘I believe in properly collating the manpower requirements of the country over the next 10 years, including keeping track of trends in our main industries, to ensure that Caymanians come first for job opportunities without unduly restricting local businesses from needed work permits.
‘We also need to ensure that our people practice the correct attitude towards work to secure the existing opportunities, but the employers must also do their part.’
Mr. Conolly also believes Cayman needs to address its social development and culture.
‘It is important that we incorporate the Caymanian culture and history throughout our schools’ curriculum to give proper grounding to our people,’ he said. ‘We need to develop civics and Caymanian political history as an integral part of that system.
Mr. Conolly also said he believes the National Archives should be placed online to give easy access to its materials.
Mr. Conolly believes he has the experience to be a good legislator.
‘While I do not have elected governmental experience, I have interacted with the highest levels of government in my various roles, including that as president of the Chamber of Commerce,’ he said. ‘I have been involved in the public/private sector committee that was formed to review international issues brought on by the FATF and the OECD as well as being involved in various government budget reviews.’
Mr. Conolly detailed some of his traits that would make him a good representative.
‘I care about the social, cultural, economic, educational and environmental development of our islands and believe I have the professional, business and related experience to make a difference at this time,’ he said. ‘I come from a family steeped in public service tradition where service to country was a given. I can see that the country is now on the wrong track with the recent advent of the party system, which has created divisiveness and reckless spending, leaving the Caymanian people behind, jobless and without hope for the future.
‘I have the appreciation of the dedication that is necessary to give when one is a member of the cabinet or legislative assembly and I am prepared to do so.
Candidate forms can be picked up at the Compass office at the Compass Centre on Shedden Road during working hours or can be emailed to candidates. Send requests to [email protected]