***UPDATE 11:55 p.m. Friday: McKeeva Bush has just announced he will instead lead a coalition of independent lawmakers as premier, rather than the deal publicized earlier with the Progressives. Read story by clicking here.****
Earlier report here:
A diverse mix of political leaders has been chosen to form the next Cayman Islands government under Premier Alden McLaughlin, who will be serving his second term in that position.
It appears the coalition government has decided to appoint West Bay MLA McKeeva Bush, Mr. McLaughlin’s longtime political rival, as Speaker of the House for the 2017-2021 Legislative Assembly.
West Bay North MLA Bernie Bush was chosen as deputy Speaker.
It is understood the mix of six ministers under Premier McLaughlin includes Progressives party, Cayman Democratic Party and independent lawmakers, but a statement released Friday afternoon did not name those individuals.
Cayman Brac West MLA Moses Kirkconnell will continue to serve as deputy premier alongside Mr. McLaughlin.
The government bench, as it stood Friday afternoon, consisted of Progressives members Mr. McLaughlin, Mr. Kirkconnell, George Town South MLA Barbara Conolly, George Town East MLA Roy McTaggart, George Town West MLA David Wight, George Town North MLA Joey Hew and Cayman Brac East MLA Juliana O’Connor Connolly. Independent West Bay South MLA Tara Rivers will again sit with the PPM on the government bench.
Joining the Progressives were the three Cayman Democratic Party members, McKeeva Bush, Bernie Bush and West Bay Central MLA Capt. Eugene Ebanks.