Miller resigns as Opposition leader

Ezzard Miller

North Side legislator Ezzard Miller announced his resignation Thursday from the role of official Opposition leader.

Support for Miller among the collection of independent backbench legislators had crumbled in recent months.

First, his deputy leader Alva Suckoo resigned, citing concerns over Miller’s leadership. Then, the rest of the opposition group wrote to Miller requesting that he do not speak on their behalf unless explicitly authorised.

That letter stopped short of asking him to resign and Miller had previously indicated he intended to continue in the role.

However, he issued a press release Thursday afternoon confirming he had written to Governor Martyn Roper formally resigning from the post, effective May 31.

He wrote, “Effectively performing this role demands dedication on the part of a committed team.

“It has become increasingly clear that the level of cohesion, industry and commitment necessary for any opposition to serve in the best interest of all the people of these islands is not possible given the current slate of independent members who made up the group.”

There is no clear favourite to replace Miller as leader of the Opposition. Though individuals have formed alliances over various issues, the Opposition group is made up of independent members with no common platform.

Miller had earlier announced plans for greater cohesion among the group ahead of the next general election.

In his New Year’s message, he announced plans for a new political entity to be known as the Cayman Islands People’s Alliance with the intent of running a full slate of candidates in 2021.

Miller was not available Thursday to elaborate on his press release. But he insisted at a recent press briefing that he would continue with plans to lead a political group into the next election even if he was ousted as leader.

Neither Suckoo nor Chris Saunders, two of the leading figures in the Opposition group, were immediately available for comment Thursday.

Miller said in his statement that he was proud of his contributions as Opposition leader and left the role with a sense of pride.

“Resigning from the post is an opportunity to refresh and renew my energy, and to focus more fully on the future of the Cayman Islands and on the needs and goals of the Caymanian people and my constituents, and of the population as a whole,” he added.

“As the elected representative for North Side, I will remain firmly committed to the concepts of participatory democracy and robust, constructive opposition as integral to the democratic functioning of government.”

He said he would continue to offer constructive criticisms and alternate solutions in response to government proposals.

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