Letters to the Editor: Financial magician is needed

The new constitution provides for
an increase of Ministers (not to exceed two-fifths of elected Members of the
Legislative Assembly and/or an increase of the elected members of the LA by a
law to be passed by the LA. However under the constitution it can only be done
after dissolution of the LA and an order by the Governor providing for
electoral districts and their boundaries.

In effect the addition of one
minister will bring the Cabinet to seven voting ministers (sadly, under the new
constitution the deputy governor and the attorney general had their voting
rights in Cabinet taken away and the financial secretary is no longer in
Cabinet).

 Under the previous constitution there were
five voting ministers and three voting official members who were professionals
and experienced in their portfolios (who are Caymanian civil servants and were
not elected politicians) and this provided a healthy check and balance in the
interests of the public.

At present the backbench
(opposition and other MLAs) cannot remove the premier and  the Government on a vote of no confidence  because it takes two thirds of the MLAs to do
so and with six ministers there are only nine backbencher MLAs and 10 are
needed (two thirds of 15).

This is UNDEMOCRATIC and the
Government in practice cannot be removed by the non Cabinet members.

All democratic Westminster
constitutions have a majority vote (51 per cent) for a no confidence in
Government resolution eg. Bermuda, BVI and the UK. In Cayman this would be eight
of the 15 MLAs. Let us see if the UDP Government will correct the PPM’s mistake
under this section of the new constitution.

We pointed this out to the PPM
Government and the constitution review secretariat before the constitution was
passed and we published letters pointing out this error but they did not
correct this serious problem.

Remember the new constitution was
approved by a minority of registered voters and could have had more checks and
balances in the public’s interest. It was promoted by the PPM and the Cayman
ministers association and not the UDP.

We know that the last PPM
Government’s mathematics is lacking when we see the serious debt and financial
problems that they left the Cayman Islands in. There are no short term
solutions to excessive long term debt, which are not usually harsh and
unconscionable to the public! The politicians spend but unfortunately the
public pays.  

If another minister of Cabinet is
needed (the financial secretary is no longer in Cabinet since the new
constitution) the UDP needs to find a financial MAGICIAN to deal with the last
PPM Government’s excessive long term debt and the harsh financial burden, which
now falls on the shoulders of the Cayman people, their children and future
generations.

 

Truman Bodden

John McLean

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