Some minor hiccups in nominations and a surprise last-minute candidate in North Side district highlighted a busier-than-usual Nomination Day ahead of the Cayman Islands general election.
By 2pm, at least 21 candidates had registered in George Town and another 14 registered apiece in Bodden Town and West Bay districts. At the end of Wednesday, 58 candidates were expected to earn nominations for the 22 May election.
The smaller districts of North Side and East End had nominated two candidates apiece, and in the Sister Islands, five candidates had been nominated.
It was North Side district that made the major news early on in the day, with the nomination of suspended Electricity Regulatory Authority Managing Director Joey Ebanks to stand for election there. Mr. Ebanks had announced his intention to seek nomination the night before on his Facebook page.
“I have resigned my position as [managing director] of the ERA,” Mr. Ebanks wrote. “I can tell you I am an independent candidate and I will be identifying individuals from whom I believe I have a working relationship with.”
It was speculated earlier that North Side MLA Ezzard Miller could actually be nominated alone in the district, meaning he would not face a re-election challenge at all. Mr. Ebanks unsuccessfully contested the North Side seat against Mr. Miller in 2009. Mr. Miller was nominated later in the day on Wednesday.
In East End there was a slight slip-up with one of the nominators for serving MLA Arden McLean; apparently one of the two individuals he initially used in the nomination process had not been registered as a voter in time. An alternate nominator was chosen and Mr. McLean was nominated, along with his opponent John McLean, Jr. Wednesday morning.
In Cayman Brac, MLAs Moses Kirkconnell and Premier Juliana O’Connor-Connolly were nominated. The two sitting LA members will face a challenge from three other candidates, David Allen Bodden, former MLA Lyndon Martin and Maxine Moore.
In Bodden Town, the first candidate to be nominated was former Tourism Minister Charles Clifford, seeking re-election after he lost his MLA seat there in 2009. Mr. Clifford was followed by a throng of People’s Progressive Movement supporters – his former party members – who put forth MLA Anthony Eden, former MLA Osbourne Bodden and political newbies Alva Suckoo and Wayne Panton. Independent candidates Errington Webster, Gregg Anderson, Vincent Frederick, and Arnold Berry were also nominated.
Being nominated later in the day were Health Minister Mark Scotland, Dwayne Seymour and fellow People’s National Alliance member Richard Christian.
West Bay district led off its nominations with two Bushes, Bernie and former Premier McKeeva, followed by the two other United Democratic Party candidates Captain Eugene Ebanks and Velma Powery-Hewitt. Independent candidates Mervin Smith and Tara Rivers were also nominated in the district.
Later in the day, West Bay candidates being nominated included People’s National Alliance members Rolston Anglin and Cline Glidden, Jr., as well as PPM members Dalkeith Bothwell, Ray Farrington, Captain Bryan Ebanks and Woody DaCosta. Independent candidates Dwene Ebanks and Andrea Christian.
George Town will be the most crowded political field by far. Candidates nominated there included PPMer’s Alden McLaughlin, Marco Archer, Lucille Seymour, Kurt Tibbetts, Joey Hew and Kenneth Bryan. United Democratic Party candidates Renard Moxam, Ellio Solomon, Jonathan Piercy, Walling Whittaker, Mike Adam and Rayal Bodden were nominated as well, along with independents Sharon Roulstone, Derrington ‘Bo’ Miller, Roy McTaggart, Jude Scott, Frank McField, Matthew Leslie, Winston Connolly, Stefan Baraud, and Jacqueline Haynes.
Check back to www.caycompass.com for more nomination news later in the day….