Coalition for Cayman, purporting to represent independent candidates in the May 3013 election, has released a list of “founding principles”, detailing a programme for fiscal prudence and personal integrity.
In a two-page statement, the organisation outlined nearly a dozen standards “based on refocusing our government on the citizens it exists to serve”.
“The candidates we endorse will have agreed to base their governmental decisions upon these Founding Principles, however as Independents they will each be voting their conscience on individual issues,” the statement said.
Johann Moxam, one of the coalition’s founders, said the group, launched at a 19 November George Town rally, is not a political party and has not endorsed any candidates, but called it a “public awareness and advocacy group”.
The “C4C”, in fact, detailed its opposition to party politics yesterday, saying the “two party system had led to a government defined by majority and minority, winners and losers.
“Just as we are all united under one flag of Cayman,” the statement read, calling on general patriotism, “it’s time to unite behind one set of guiding principles that serve the best interest of all Caymanians. It’s time to put country first.”
The group was jointly founded in November by co-chairs James Bergstrom, attorney, and accountant Jude Scott, and committee members Mr. Moxam, Kris Bergstrom, Clarence Bothwell, JC Calhoun, Jacqueline Haynes, Randy Merren, Gary Rutty and Emmiel Scott.
The C4C founding principles
A belief in the supremacy of a democratic parliament and the rule of law.
A belief in the right of Caymanians to direct government by the democratic process.
A belief that a responsible government must be fiscally prudent and should be limited to those responsibilities which cannot be discharged reasonably by the individual or others.
A belief that the government must ensure the safety of the public.
Offenders should be punished for their offending and, where possible, rehabilitated and required to make good the losses they have caused.
A belief that good and responsible government is attentive to the people it represents and has representatives who at all times conduct themselves in an ethical manner, displaying integrity, honesty and concern for the best interest of all citizens.
A belief in the value of life, individual privacy, the freedom of the individual (including freedom of speech, conscience, worship and assembly) and the right to defend one’s self and property, while recognising the need for the comity of society as a whole.
A belief that it is the responsibility of individuals to provide for themselves, their families and their dependents, while recognising that government must respond to those who require assistance and compassion.
A belief that the natural environment and resources of the Cayman Islands should be used responsibly, ensuring that future generations inherit an environment that is clean and safe
A belief that all citizens should have reasonable access to quality healthcare and education.
A belief that the best guarantors of the prosperity and well-being of the people of the Cayman Islands are:
A climate in which individual initiative is rewarded and excellence is pursued
The freedom of individual citizens to pursue their enlightened and legitimate self-interest within a competitive economy while ensuring their actions do not contravene the best interests of the country
The freedom of individual citizens to enjoy the fruits of their labour to the greatest possible extent while also contributing in a meaningful way to the well-being of the country
The right to own property.
“The people of Cayman are frustrated with party politics, government overspending, debt, crime and economic uncertainty, the statement finished. “We are committed to bringing new and accountable leadership to unite the people of the country and restore the Cayman Islands’ reputation while maintaining social balance and sustainable growth.”
The 2009 election pitted a slate of 22 independent candidates against 21 party nominees across Cayman’s six electoral districts. Only one of the former, North Side’s Ezzard Miller, gained a Legislative Assembly seat, although East End MLA later bolted the People’s Progressive Movement, declaring himself independent.
Unaffiliated candidates later blamed their poor electoral showing on a lack of resources, taking just more than one-quarter of the votes.
Mr. Moxam said the Caymanian Compass that the C4C was “a loose group of concerned citizens” that, while unlikely to fund independent campaigns, was vetting a small group of potential nominees and would ultimately throw its weight behind half-a-dozen candidates.
He stopped short of promising funding, however, saying contributions might be considered, but no decisions had been reached.
“We also will not endorse candidates in North Side or East End,” he said, indicating adequate independent representation was already in place, and that the coalition’s choices endorsements would be detailed later.
Finally, Mr. Moxam, said, the C4C would release a statement regarding recent political events and the accession to government control of UDP break-aways Juliana O’Connor-Connolly, Rolston Anglin, Cline Glidden, Mark Scotland and Dwayne Seymour.
“We will be commenting on the viability of the current arrangements,” he said.