House Speaker McKeeva Bush has broken his silence on allegations that he assaulted the female manager of a local bar, saying at the time of the incident he was disoriented, does not remember the incident and believes he must have felt that he was in danger.
“I wish to extend my profound and sincere apologies to the management and staff of Coral Beach, the public, my colleagues, my constituents and in particular (the manager) for the incident which occurred on Friday 21 February, 2020,” Bush said.
The Compass has opted to withhold the name of the manager as the police are investigating the matter.
Bush, in his statement, outlined the events of Friday, 21 Feb. saying that he went to Coral Beach to collect food to take home and was told that he had passed out and fell.
He said he was told that when he was being helped to his feet he “reacted badly to the very persons who were surrounding me and assisting me.
“I had no intention of doing so. I did not know where I was or what had happened or who was assisting me to get back to my feet. I was confused and disorientated, a similar feeling to that which I experienced when coming out of anaesthetic from my previous operations. I can only assume that I must have believed that I was in danger,” Bush said in the statement.
On Saturday, police issued a statement about the assault, saying initially that it was reported that a senior member of government has assaulted a woman at a bar.
She suffered minor injuries. The Compass reached out to the manager for comment following the initial report, but she has not responded.
Bush, in his statement, said he has always been “transparent” and shared what he said was a “very personal matter, not by way of excuse, but in the hope that my personal experience and my own lack of dealing professionally with the same, may encourage others to take a different path from the one that I took”.
Bush said on the night of the incident he was dealing with grief due to the recent anniversary of the loss of his daughter, who died at the end of January in 2011, in addition to a number of work-related issues.
“These feelings get worse in times surrounding the event of loss and on Friday 21, February 2020, I found myself sitting at her gravesite and my mother’s who was very dear to me,” Bush said.
Bush said he did not take the advice of a number of his close friends to seek professional help to deal with the personal grief and his family’s loss.
“This incident has brought home to me the result of my failures to seek professional help and a realisation of my inability, despite significant efforts, to deal with this on my own,” he said.
“I am committed to seeking long term professional help to assist me in dealing with the emotional pain which I am experiencing and to cease any use of alcohol as it exaggerates my emotional pain,” the House Speaker said.
The Compass has reached out to the Office of the Premier for comment but had not received a response by press time.
Meanwhile, police Monday evening said they continue to investigate the incident allegedly involving Bush.
In a brief statement the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service named Coral Beach as the scene of the incident.
”The parties involved were all said to be present between 8:30pm on Friday 21 February and 12:30am on Saturday, 22 February,” the police said.
Police have issued an appeal to everyone present at the West Bay Road bar during the time frame provided, to come forward and provide information on what they witnessed.
”The incident is being investigated by a team consisting of a superintendent and detectives within the Criminal Investigations Department,” the statement added.
Read the full story in Thursday’s Compass.