Premier McKeeva Bush personally pays to air a new show on Radio Cayman hosted by Dr. Frank McField and Lorna Bush.
The premier revealed he pays for the Community Voices show, which, he said, was the first step in a government strategy to bring a “positive side of things” to Cayman.
“I pay for the people on there and Radio Cayman provides the service … The government will not pay for that part of it,” Mr. Bush said.
The next step in the strategy is to launch a government television channel that will include broadcasts of meetings of the Legislative Assembly on TV, which would be funded by government.
Mr. Bush announced plans to launch a government TV channel at a public meeting in April, saying it would deliver the government’s message to the people without being filtered by the media.
North Side MLA Ezzard Miller last week raised questions about who was funding the daily talk show, saying he had received a response to a Freedom of Information request from Radio Cayman, which said the radio station did not produce the show and that the station was only providing air time.
According to that response from Radio Cayman, the station received “verbal directives” from the Ministry of Finance, Tourism and Development.
However, Mr. Bush insisted he could not issue a directive to the station as Radio Cayman came under the remit of Deputy Premier Juliana O’Connor-Connolly’s Ministry for District Administration, Lands and Agriculture.
“I could not give a directive. That came from the minister responsible. The instruction came from her. It is something that I asked to get done,” Mr. Bush said.
Community Voices’ presenter, Mr. McField, a former government minister, said he and his co-host Ms Bush were not receiving any salary to do the show.
He said his show, on which Premier McKeeva Bush was his first guest, concentrated on issues affecting Cayman and not on politics.
“I got out of politics, in the sense that I am not seeking to be elected. There are certain issues in this country I am worried about and have always been concerned about before I was ever elected,” he said, adding that those were the issues the talk show addressed.