Rounds of farewells for Taylors

Among the parting gifts given to Governor Duncan Taylor during his recent round of farewells was a cow cod, handed to him by Police Commissioner David Baines.  

Governor Taylor and his wife Marie-Beatrice had a lot of farewell receptions in recent weeks, receiving gifts, hearing speeches and saying their goodbyes. 

One gift raised some eyebrows and smiles on Friday at a reception on the lawn of Government House when Commissioner Baines handed over a cow cod to the governor. 

A cow cod is a leather rod made from a dried bull’s penis, used as a whip. Such an instrument hit the headlines in the first couple of years of Governor Taylor’s tenure in Cayman when Osbourne Bodden, now a government minister and legislator for Bodden Town, was arrested in October 2010 and later acquitted in December 2011 of assault, purportedly using a cow cod. Mr. Bodden contended he used a stick, not a cow cod, and only in self-defence. 

According to a government press release, Commissioner Baines presented the Taylors with a cow cod for “continuing protection”, as well as a framed photograph of the governor’s inspection of the first RCIPS guard of honour that he received upon landing in the Cayman Islands. 

The Taylors were scheduled to leave the Cayman Islands Wednesday evening, bound for London, after spending three and a half years here. Mr. Taylor has been appointed the UK’s new ambassador to Mexico. Helen Kilpatrick will be Cayman’s new governor and is expected to arrive next month. 

At Friday’s gathering, Mr. Taylor expressed sadness at his imminent departure from Cayman, where he said he and his wife had made “many good friends”. 

Premier Alden McLaughlin, on behalf of the people of Cayman, thanked the governor and Mrs. Taylor for their efforts over the years. On his personal behalf, he said he was grateful for the grounding he had received from the governor since taking office this year. 

Mr. McLaughlin said forging a strong partnership between Cayman and the UK and avoiding constant battles were vital to inspiring confidence in investors. While differences were inevitable, he saw little need, “for public utterances of dissent between the Cayman Islands and UK government”. 

The premier invited Caymanian multi-media artist Luelan Bodden to present a gift crafted from local conch shells and Cayman mahogany to the Taylors, on behalf of the people of the Cayman Islands. 

The Taylors also attended a gathering with members of the Chamber of Commerce on Thursday, 1 August, at which Chamber President Chris Duggan, on behalf of members, lauded the role that Mr. Taylor had played as governor. He said that, particularly in the past 18 months, Mr. Taylor had unhesitatingly made the right decisions for the betterment of the Cayman Islands, even while facing “unwarranted, unacceptable and unjustified criticism from a few”. 

He said the chamber supported Mr. Taylor’s decisions and that the outcome of those decisions was evidenced by the prosperity that Cayman currently enjoys. 

In reply, Governor Taylor acknowledged that support from a large number of people had helped him to guide the territory through challenging times. “The Cayman Islands, in my view, is a very good place now, the mood is very positive and we have a good economic situation,” he told chamber members. 

Mr. Taylor continued that the private sector delivers wealth and the government’s role is to provide services that facilitate the operation of the private sector and establish an environment that supports the private sector’s role, with minimal bureaucratic interference.  

“If the Cayman Islands is reputed to be a bastion of good governance and real integrity, people will be queuing up to do business here,” he said. 

As a parting gift Mr. Duggan presented the Taylors with a set of three commemorative plates depicting scenes in Caymanian life. 

Late last month, civil servants and government officials also had a chance to say farewell to the Taylors at a reception at the government administration building in George Town. 

Governor Taylor and his wife Marie-Beatrice had a lot of farewell receptions in recent weeks, receiving gifts, hearing speeches and saying their goodbyes. 

Governor Duncan Taylor farewell

Governor Duncan Taylor and his wife Marie-Beatrice inspect a cow cod presented to them by Police Commissioner David Baines, right.

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