MLA defends his character

Bodden Town MLA Dwayne Seymour, who is charged with
several criminal offences and is due to appear in Summary Court next month, has
issued a statement defending his character against what he called “baseless
accusations”.

Mr. Seymour’s charges stem from a fight that took place
at a Seven Mile Beach Hotel in May. He is accused of attempting to obstruct,
prevent, pervert of defeat the course of justice in relation to that incident.

In his statement, the MLA said that the experience “has
been a difficult, painful and regretful experience,” adding that he and his
family have been trying to heal from day to day.

“One of the main reasons I did not respond publicly to
the media was to protect my family whilst dealing with this private and
sensitive situation.”

This is the second hurdle Mr. Seymour has had to clear
since he has taken office, as his election in the 2009 poll was challenged, and
it was alleged that he did not declare his government contracts before the
deadline stipulated in the constitution. Both he and Health Minister Mark
Scotland were found to be legitimate candidates for the Legislative Assembly by
Chief Justice Anthony Smellie.

Chief Justice Smellie ruled that the challenge was
brought too late and that what was filed was not in the prescribed form of an
election petition.

“If the time limits imposed by the Elections Law can be
bypassed, then there would be no time limits at all. That cannot be a proper
interpretation of the constitutional intent,” the Chief Justice said at the
time.

With regard to the current legal battle he is facing, Mr.
Seymour said, “I would love to know that this matter can be resolved quickly,
so I am able to spend my time over the next months continuing the important
business of the people and spending quality time with my children.”

He added that the charges came as a surprise, and he was
dismayed at the amount of time it took for them to be brought, some
five-and-a-half months.

“Along with that seemed to be an almost simultaneous
request to make statements to the press for charges which I have no earthly
idea where, how they could arose over the last several months. It seemed that
everyone knew I was being charged with an offence before I did,” said Mr.
Seymour. He added that he did not know the individuals involved in the charges
being made and he was not aware of the circumstances being described in the
charges.

“I look forward to the court hearing to bring this matter
to a close,” he said.

The MLA begged for the public’s understanding during this
“episode” during such a difficult time nationally and thanked all for their
support during “this difficult time.”

Premier McKeeva Bush earlier defended Mr. Seymour in a
statement, which read, “On behalf of the elected Government, we wish to express
publicly, our moral support for our backbench colleague Mr. Dwayne Seymour
during this difficult time.

“As a government, and as Caymanians first and foremost,
we understand the many challenges that must be faced, both internally and
externally to build and keep a family together, and as Caymanians we understand
and empathize with the pain that is endured, when someone, against God and
against all social and ethical obligations, interferes with that sacrosanct
relationship.

“It is in the appreciation of the circumstances and of
those considerations that we publicly voice today our continued support for our
colleague and friend Mr. Dwayne Seymour.”

Mr. Seymour is due to appear in court on 9 November to
answer the charges.