May 14, 2021

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iNews briefs2Cayman Islands ESO to conduct fieldwork for Household Register update

The Economics and Statistics Office (ESO) will be conducting a full update of the Cayman Islands Household Register from May 26th to August 29th, 2014.   The Household Register provides a count of all households in the Cayman Islands, based on the 2010 Census.

“It is important for policy makers to be informed from household statistics. Therefore, I am urging the public to cooperate with this statistical activity which will be the basis for selecting households for future surveys such as the labour force surveys,” stated the Hon. Marco Archer, Minister of Finance for Economic Development.

This is the first time since the 2010 Census that a full update of the Household Register will be conducted. Trained enumerators will visit every dwelling unit listed in the Household Register, as well as newly constructed dwelling units that are not listed, to determine if they are occupied by a household.

ESO will also be upgrading its data collection process through the use of tablets.

ESO officials expect the continued cooperation from the community as in the past household surveys. “We thank them anew in advance for their support this year,” stated ESO Director Maria Zingapan. She added that ESO staff members can be identified through their IDs. She therefore advises that concerned community members should always ask for the field workers to present their IDs before providing key information.


Cayman coach will know length of custodial time for teen sex crime Tue (27)

A coach (33) at a Cayman sports club charged with defilement, having sex with a teen (13) and possessing an indecent photograph of both of them having sex when he was 31 faces a custodial sentence said Grand Court Judge Charles Quin.

The teenage girl, who is now 15, did not believe herself to be a victim and was anticipating that she and the coach would be revealing their relationship as soon as she was 16 but a video of them having sex from which the photograph was taken and placed on his cell phone without her permission.

The case was discovered by the teenager’s parents when during a row between them she told them about what she believed was a loving relationship she was having with her sports coach.

The parents informed the police, the man was arrested and he admitted his guilt.

The teenager was sent to a school abroad because of the sensitivity of the case and harassment she and her family have suffered after exposing the coach who appears to be well liked.

The arrest took place in March 2013 and the man was bailed in custody to be sentenced on Tuesday 27th.


Coast Guard suspends search for 4 sailors on British yacht

By Michael Martinez, CNN

(CNN) — A missing British yacht was found overturned with its keel broken, causing a breech in the hull, about 1,000 miles off Massachusetts, but the four-man crew is still missing, the U.S. Coast Guard said Friday.

A U.S. Navy helicopter spotted the capsized the 39-foot Cheeki Rafiki sailboat within a Coast Guard search area east of Cape Cod, officials said.

A Navy boat crew and surface swimmer assessed the damaged boat, but the swimmer found no signs of the crew after knocking on the hull and reaching below the waterline, the Coast Guard said.

Search crews looked Friday for a bright-colored life raft and the missing sailors, who the Royal Yachting Association identified as skipper Andrew Bridge, 21; Steve Warren, 52; Paul Goslin, 56; and James Male, 23.

As expected, the Coast Guard suspended the search at 10 p.m. ET Friday — which was midnight in the search zone — after scouring another 21,000 square miles.

For more:

See related iNews Cayman story “Two Somerset men among four feared lost at sea” at:


Teen who distrusted Cayman’s system sentenced to 2.5 years for robbery

A teenager who was 16 at the time of his crime when he was involved in an armed robbery at Chisholm’s store in North Side last October received 2.5 years jail term by Grand Court Judge Charles Quin last Friday (23).

The teen co-operated fully with the police after his arrest said he was intimidated and cajoled by the four older men, Courtney Bryan, Fernando Ellington and Odain Ebanks into committing the crime.

During the trial it was revealed the teenager had been placed in Foster care because his father was abusing drugs, he was sent to the Alternative Education Centre when and introduced to ganja at age 13. He was sent to Bonaventure Boys Home but was not provided with the therapeutic and mental health care that he needed. The Judge noted the gaps in the system that have failed him and others.

His defence lawyer urged the court not to send his client to spend more time locked up and now in an adult environment as he said he needed proper treatment. However Justice Quin said the teenager had played a significant part in what was a terrifying experience for the victims and a youth order was not commensurate with the crime. He also noted the teenanger had previous convictions for drugs and assault.


Thieves in Cayman target fishing equipment and electronics


RCIPS CID is warning boat owners to take precautionary measures to safeguard their fishing equipment and electronics from being stolen. It is not recommended that boat owners leave their fishing equipment and electronics on their boats, if unattended. Boat owners should not keep their fishing equipment and electronics in sheds next to their boats. Officers of the CID are investigating recent incidents where expensive fishing equipment and electronics were stolen from fishing boats left unattended and storage sheds next to their boats.

It is a criminal offence to purchase any goods knowing or believing them to be stolen, or dishonestly undertakes or assists in their retention, removal or disposal. If a person is found guilty for this crime, they are liable to imprisonment to fourteen years.

Any person who offers to sell something that the prospective buyer knows or believes to value more chances are that thing is stolen. Any person who is offered to buy fishing equipment, electronics or anything of a lesser value should contact CID at 949-4222, or to remain anonymous to contact Crime Stoppers 800-8477(TIPS).


World Turtle Day in Cayman marred by death of turtle

A group of kayakers in Grand Cayman’s North Sound spotted an adult 300 lb. dead turtle lying in the mangroves.

They notified the Department of Environment (DOE) who recovered the adult male and said it looked as if it had been killed by a boat propeller.

The DOE urged members of the public to exercise caution when boating, and watch out for turtles on the surface.

See iNews Cayman story “Celebrating World Turtle Day 2014 at Cayman Turtle Farm” at:

‘On-call cabbie’ convicted of murdering Trinidad government minister’s daughter

From Caribbean360

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Friday May 23, 2014, CMC – Taxi driver Ivan Taylor will be sentenced on July 23 after a 12-member jury Thursday found him guilty of murdering 39-year-old school teacher, Michelle Coudray-Greaves, the daughter of a Trinidad and Tobago government minister in 2012.

The trial lasted 17 days and featured a number of expert witnesses from both the medical and technological fields with the prosecution relying heavily on circumstantial evidence.

Coudray-Greaves charred remains were found in a cane field in Montego Bay, nine days after she was reported missing on June 2, 2012.

A post mortem concluded that the daughter of the Trinidad government minister died as a result of blows to the head.

Taylor, 46, who had served as an on-call ‘cabbie’ for the school teacher, was arrested shortly after her burnt body was discovered.

Cell site analysis on the night Coudray-Greave went missing placed Taylor in the vicinity of the location where the body was found. Two witnesses also testified that they saw a car resembling Taylor’s driving out of the cane field in the early hours of the morning she went missing.

For more:


Crab Season road safety in Cayman Islands

The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service is reminding the public that the month of May is considered the starting of the crab season. Persons who go crabbing in their vehicles are advised of the following road safety precautionary measures:

·         Drivers should not swerve their vehicles to avoid running over crabs on the road. This evasive action could cause the drivers to lose control of their vehicles and cause an accident.

·         Drivers should not stop in the road to catch evasive crabs.

·         Drivers should park their vehicles safely off the side of the road with their parking lights and emergency flashers on, so as to make their presence visible to other road users.

·         Drivers should not leave their vehicles running whilst the vehicles are unaccompanied.

·         Light coloured clothing or reflective vests should be worn by persons crabbing and flash lights used.

·         Children out crabbing should be properly supervised by adults and advised of the importance of road safety before they leave their houses.

Motorists should slow down and take extra precaution when approaching any vehicle they see at the roadside as persons may be out crabbing.


Grenada authorities investigate possible plane debris found on Carriacou beach

From Caribbean360

ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada, Friday May 23, 2014, CMC – The Grenada authorities have launch an investigation to determine whether or not debris that washed ashore on a beach in the Grenadine island of Carriacou had come from an aircraft.

The debris which bears the numbers 81KC.1120 – 0025M133C was observed floating in the water by local fishermen in the community of Windward.

“They saw the debris in the water and decided to pull it ashore, when they did it looked like a piece of plane,” said Nikesha Noel, who was among those witnessing the recovery.

Parliamentary Secretary for Information, Winston Garraway, said that the debris had been placed with the police and would later be transferred to the mainland.

“In the meantime we are engaging the relevant and appropriate aviation and investigative authorities to help us identify the debris with a view to solving the mystery of its appearance in our waters,” he said.

For more:


Cayman Islands US relations

Although the United Kingdom is responsible for the Cayman Islands’ defense and foreign affairs, important bilateral issues are often resolved by negotiations between the Cayman Government and foreign governments, including the United States. Despite close historic and political links to the United Kingdom and Jamaica, geography and the rise of tourism and international finance in the Cayman Islands’ economy has made the United States its most important foreign economic partner. Following a dip in tourists from the United States after 9/11, about 500,000 U.S. citizens traveled to the Cayman Islands in 2002; some 10,000 Americans are resident there.

For U.S. and other foreign investors and businesses, the Cayman Islands’ main appeal as a financial center is the absence of all major direct taxes, free capital movement, a minimum of government regulations, and a well-developed financial infrastructure. The Cayman Islands is the world’s fifth-largest financial center.

With the rise in international narcotics trafficking, the Cayman Government entered into the Narcotics Agreement of 1984 and the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty of 1986 with the United States in order to reduce the use of its facilities for money laundering operations. In June 2000, The Cayman Islands was listed by multilateral organizations as a tax haven and a noncooperative territory in fighting money laundering. The country’s swift response in enacting laws limiting banking secrecy, introducing requirements for customer identification and record keeping, and for banks to cooperate with foreign investigators led to its removal from the list of noncooperative territories in June 2001.

U.S. Representation

The United States does not maintain diplomatic offices in the Cayman Islands. Diplomatic relations are conducted through the U.S. Embassy in London and the British Embassy in Washington, DC.

The Cayman Islands are, however, part of the consular district administered by the U.S. Embassy in Kingston, Jamaica. Inquiries regarding visas to the U.S. or other consular matters should be directed to the consular section of the U.S. Embassy, 2 Oxford Road, Kingston 5, Jamaica; tel: 876-929-4850; fax: 876-935-6019.

There also is a U.S. consular agent, Gail Duquesnay, in the Cayman Islands to assist in providing services for American citizens–tel: 345-945-1511.


Ex-hedge fund execs plead guilty to conspiracy

From ABC News

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) – Three former hedge fund executives pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge stemming from a scheme to deceive investors in order to keep a big customer, federal prosecutors said Thursday.

David Bryson, 45, of Ridgefield; Bart Gutekunst, 62, of Weston; and Richard Pereira, 42, of Ridgefield, pleaded guilty Wednesday in New Haven to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, the U.S. attorney’s office said. The three are former executives of New Stream Capital LLC, a Ridgefield-based hedge fund.

In 2007, New Stream told foreign investors that a fund would be closing and they would have to move their investments into new funds in the Cayman Islands. At risk of losing their largest investor, the three set in motion a scheme to secretly keep the fund open and give priority to certain investors, prosecutors said.

New Stream failed to inform investors who had transferred into the Cayman Islands fund that the existing fund was remaining open or that it was being given priority over the Cayman Island fund, prosecutors said. New Stream also concealed the magnitude of the pending redemptions, prosecutors said.

The charge carries up to five years in prison. The three are scheduled to be sentenced in August.

Gutekunst’s attorney declined to comment. Telephone messages left with attorneys for Bryson and Pereira were not immediately returned.

For more:


CUC announces declaration of dividend on Class A Ordinary Shares


GRAND CAYMAN, CAYMAN ISLANDS, May 22, 2014 /CNW/ – Caribbean Utilities Company, Ltd. (TSX:CUP.U) (“CUC” or “the Company”) announced today that the Board of Directors has declared a dividend of US$0.165 per Class A Ordinary Share, or an annualized dividend of US$0.66 per share. The dividend will be payable June 15, 2014 to shareholders of record June 3, 2014.

CUC provides electricity to Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, under a non-exclusive Electricity Generation Licence expiring in 2029 and an exclusive Electricity Transmission and Distribution Licence expiring in 2028. Further information is available at

Caribbean Utilities Company, Ltd. (“CUC” or “the Company”), on occasion, includes forward-looking statements in its media releases, Canadian securities regulatory authorities filings, shareholder reports and other communications. Forward-looking statements include statements that are predictive in nature, depend upon future events or conditions, or include words such as “expects”, “anticipates”, “plan”, “believes”, “estimates”, “intends”, “targets”, “projects”, “forecasts”, “schedule”, or negative versions thereof and other similar expressions, or future or conditional verbs such as “may”, “will”, “should”, “would” and “could”. Forward-looking statements are based on underlying assumptions and management’s beliefs, estimates and opinions, and are subject to certain risks and uncertainties surrounding future expectations generally that may cause actual results to vary from plans, targets and estimates. Such risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to operational, general economic, market and business conditions, regulatory developments and weather conditions. CUC cautions readers that actual results may vary significantly from those expected should certain risks or uncertainties materialize or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect. Forward-looking statements are provided for the purpose of providing information about management’s current expectations and plans relating to the future. Readers are cautioned that such information may not be appropriate for other purposes. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise except as required by law.

SOURCE Caribbean Utilities Company, Ltd.


“One Love” dispute with Marley estate ends with out of court settlement

From Caribbean360

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Friday May 23, 2014, CMC – The Bob Marley estate and the US based fried chicken chain, Raising Cane’s have reportedly reached an out of court settlement in their legal dispute over the chain’s use of the slogan “One Love.”

That slogan is widely associated with the reggae icon because it happens to the title of one of his biggest hits.

Thursday’s online edition of The Advocate – the Louisiana based newspaper quoted Todd Graves, founder and chief executive officer of Canes, saying that a “mutually beneficial agreement” was reached.

The story also quotes Timothy Ervin attorney for Fifty-Six Hope Road Music Ltd., owned by Marley’s widow and children, as reporting that “mutually agreeable terms” led to a settlement.

It was in December 2013 that Fifty-Six Hope Road sued for alleged trademark infringement. The estate claimed Cane’s never sought or obtained a license or permission to use the Marley One Love trademark.

Cane’s then sued Fifty-Six Hope Road seeking a court judgment that it is not infringing on any of the estate’s rights. Cane’s has used the “One Love” trademark since 2001 with no conflict and registered it with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in 2005.

U.S. District Judge James Brady, at the request of both sides, dismissed Fifty-Six Hope Road’s lawsuit May 13. The same day, Chief U.S. District Judge Brian Jackson dismissed Cane’s suit at the request of the parties.

“Hope Road is glad the matters have been settled upon mutually agreeable terms,” Ervin is reported to have said in a written statement on Wednesday.

Either side provided no further details.

For more:


Cayman’s Jolly Roger will be jolly again soon

Cayman Islands popular pirate ship, “The Jolly Roger”, has been missing without action over the past nine months due to being in dry dock undergoing a $150,000 re-fit.

The re-fit, comprising replacement of lumber, installation of a new generator, re-building of engine and remodeling of the decks, has been completed and the galleon will be offering trips for tourists this coming week.

The 65 ton ship was originally built in 1986 and is a 2/3rds replica of Christopher Colombus’ ‘The Nina”.


Caribbean export extends the evaluation process of the Direct Assistance Grant Scheme

Bridgetown, Barbados, May 22, 2014 — The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) announces the extension for the completion of the Direct Assistance Grant Scheme (DAGS) evaluation process to the Calls for Proposal to June 30, 2014.

Caribbean Export published the Calls for Proposal for both the Accelerated and Regular Procedures grant facilities under the Direct Assistance Grant Scheme, as part of the Regional Private Sector Development Programme (RPSDP), funded by the European Union under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) on January 17, 2014, with a deadline for submission of application on March 7, 2014.

As was indicated in the Guidelines and Application form, applicants were permitted to submit their application in one of four languages spoken in the CARIFORUM Region; English, Spanish, French and Dutch. Applications received in a language other than English, are translated prior to evaluation by our internal and external teams. Due to the high volume of applications received requiring translation, the date for announcement of the results has been deferred from June 6, 2014 to the new date of June 30, 2014.

Caribbean Export remains committed to the firms that we serve, and to bringing the best possible options to accessing the finance needed for the continued growth of your business.

The Direct Assistance Grant Scheme is a reimbursement grant funding facility specifically designed to provide financial assistance to legally registered firms, individuals and Business Support Organisations (BSOs) who have the potential to export their products and services.

Queries regarding this extension should be submitted to the dedicated DAGS email address at [email protected]


Someone painted a green iguana blue and it’s roaming around a Cayman gas station

We have received a number of calls from concerned residents having seen a ‘rare’ blue iguana roaming along the West Bay Road on Grand Cayman especially in the vicinity of the gas station by Pizza Hut.

However, this ‘blue’ iguana is in fact a green one that someone has caught, painted it blue and then released it.

Whilst it might appear to be just a prank it is in fact very cruel and could be toxic to its skin. Iguanas rely on heat to regulate their temperatures and the paint could affect this causing it much distress.


Sabin Vaccine Institute issues statement on New York Times schistosomiasis article

By Emma Rogers From Vaccine news

Ambassador Michael W. Marine, the CEO of Sabin Vaccine Institute, issued a statement on Tuesday regarding the New York Times’ publishing of a front-page article on the subject of schistosomiasis, a parasitic disease transmitted by freshwater snails.

Schistosomiasis infects more than 200 million people worldwide and causes horrific symptoms, especially in girls and women. The disease kills 300,000 people annually, making it the second deadliest parasitic disease after malaria.

The disease was featured in an article by Donald G. McNeil Jr. titled “A Simple Theory, and a Proposal, on H.I.V. In Africa.” The article said that schistosomiasis has been identified as a co-factor in the spread of HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa.

Marine applauded the New York Times for drawing attention to the problem, which is largely neglected as a major disease by policymakers and the media.

In his statement, Marine recommended an expansion in mass drug administration programs that treat and prevent the disease. He also called for an increase in support for the development a schistosomiasis vaccine.

The Sabin Product Development Partnership’s Schistosomiasis Vaccine Initiative is currently developing such a vaccine through a joint venture with the Texas Children’s Hospital and the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.

Marine thanked the New York Times for their feature, as it will help energize efforts to overcome the disease.

For more:


Rotary tie to Light Up Rotary in Cayman

The 2014 theme for Rotary International is Light Up Rotary and this theme is manifested in the official Rotary tie that has been brought to the Cayman Islands for the Rotary conference.

To help raise funds for the Rotary Foundation they have asked all Rotarians to pledge their donations to have local televisions station, CITN’s general Manager, April Cummings, to wear the tie on TV.

The Rotary Foundation spends over $100 million annually to support Rotary Club around the world and their goal is to raise $1 billion by 2017.


Santiago de Cuba Gets Ready for Caribbean Festival

From Cuban News Agency

SANTIAGO DE CUBA, Cuba, May 23 (acn) A high level delegation of the Republic of Suriname, headed by roving ambassador Arnold Th. Halfhide, is on a visit to the city of Santiago de Cuba to finalize details of the 34th edition of the Caribbean Festival, dedicated to that nation.

Like every year, the eastern city hosts this meeting, this time on July 3-9, which brings together the most diverse cultural expressions around a country of this geographic area with the purpose of exchanging customs and traditions.

During the meeting, held on Thursday, it was announced that about 280 artists, producers, coordinators and intellectuals will participate, in addition to 45 artistic groups of the province and the 30 groups registered of 18 nationalities, which will perform in the different areas of the Festival, also known as the Fire Fiesta.

Also during the meeting the organizers provide details of the opening gala, the inauguration of the Surinam Center, the inaugural parade that will close with the delegation of the Caribbean nation, as well as of the premiere of a theme park dedicated to Robin Dobru, poet and politician of Surinam.

Orlando Verges, director of the Caribbean Center, explained that this edition will also include theoretical meetings, popular parades, exchanges between artists, fine arts exhibitions and the traditional tributes to deities and personalities.

In addition, the Caribbean Center award will be handed over to six communities of descendants of runaway slaves and that the 35th edition of the Fire Fiesta will be dedicated next year to the 500th anniversary of the founding of the city of Santiago de Cuba and to the Bahamas, he said.

This Festival was created in April, 1981, on the initiative of Joel James Figarola, and from the start it has been attended by important intellectuals of Spanish, English and French speaking Caribbean.

For more:


Cayman Grand Court Jurors Report Date Changed AGAIN!

The Grand Court juror report date has been changed.

Grand Court jurors who are in the 2 April to 1 July 2014 session and who are currently not empanelled, are now to report on Monday, 2 June 2014 at 9:45 a.m.

Please call the Jury Information line at 945-5072 for the most up to date information.


Canada hands over biological containment lab to Caribbean Health Agency

By Kellen Alexander From Vaccine News

The Government of Canada officially handed over a new biological containment laboratory to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) on Tuesday.

The Biosafety Level 3 facility will provide new capabilities for rapidly detecting and responding to disease outbreaks.

Manufactured by Germfree and provided in cooperation with the Pan American Health Organization (PAGO)/World Health Organization (WHO), the facility is the first of its kind in the Caribbean region.

“In our modern age, where global travel is routine and disease knows no boundaries, a well-equipped, safe and secure biological laboratory is an essential tool in the fight against infectious disease,” Gerard Latulippe, the high commissioner for Canada to Trinidad & Tobago, said. “As underscored by ongoing outbreaks of diseases such as the Chikungunya here in the Caribbean, as well as Ebola in West Africa, and the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) in the Middle East, isolated disease threats can very quickly become regional or global menaces, presenting serious threats to the health, safety and security of the people of the world.”

The lab will be able to rapidly identify samples of such diseases as yellow fever, West Nile virus, rabies, hantavirus, anthrax, drug resistant MTB and emerging infectious diseases with epidemic potential. It will also be able to handle other biological-risk agents and materials of unknown origin.

For more:


Cayman 123 Travel celebrates 7th anniversary with new app

In celebration of its 7th anniversary, local travel agent company, Cayman 123 Travel, launched its new app on Wednesday, 14 May, 2014. Theresa Chin, founder of Cayman 123 Travel, said that by creating this app the company has positioned itself as a pioneer in Cayman’s travel service industry.

Realising that by entering into the world of mobile technology it would be better suited to service its clientele. Cayman 123 Travel in conjunction with Canadian mobile marketing company LiveApp, developed an application that would place information at the fingertips of their clients, even when on the go.

Chief Executive Officer of LiveApp, Anil Mehta, stated that the app will enhance customer service by making information on cruises, hotels, packages, the latest deals and top tourist destinations easier for people to locate and access. Users can also make bookings via the app as well as contact Cayman 123 Travel representatives directly through a live chat feature on the app.

The app is available in the Google Play store and will soon be available for iOS and Blackberry users.


US Rep. Bridenstine: Why does USDA need submachine guns?

By Cathy Burke From Newsmax

Following the Department of Agriculture’s May 7 solicitation for submachine guns with 30-round magazine clips, Rep. Jim Bridenstine is demanding an explanation.

“The fear of my constituents is that the USDA is expanding outside of its intended mission,” the Oklahoma Republican wrote the agency on Wednesday.

According to AmmoLand Shooting Sports News, the timing of the USDA request for the weaponry is suspect, coming “just one month after the [Cliven] Bundy embarrassment.”

“It seems that the USDA, which oversees America’s vast tracks of forested land, may be preparing itself in the event some cowboys want their heads of cattle to munch government-owned grass,” the website stated.

Bundy gained national attention in April during an armed standoff in Nevada over cattle grazing rights.

The USDA’s solicitation was first reported by Breitbart.

But the farming agency told Politico there are more than 100 agents employed by the law enforcement division of the department’s Office of the Inspector General who carry such weapons, explaining those agents are involved in the investigation of criminal activities, including fraud, theft of government property, bribery, extortion, smuggling, and assaults on employees.

Bob Owens, the editor of, wrote the response was predictable.

“They will no doubt attempt to justify their purchase of military hardware by explaining that they conduct criminal investigations and may need to do armed raids,” he wrote, adding:

“This is part of a trend to arm every branch of federal government, whether the individual agency has a legitimate need for a paramilitary force or not.”

AmmoLand noted the Government Accountability Office in February downplayed concerns about big ammunition purchases by the Department of Homeland Security.

For more:


Cayman Dep. Governor and Chamber says private sector not helping in downsizing Civil Service

Deputy Governor Franz Manderson has said that to date none of the Cayman Islands’ larger employers have produced any kind of offer to take on local workers that could become casualties in the downsizing of Cayman’s civil service.

The Cayman Islands Chamber of Commerce president, Johan Moxam, has expressed similar concerns in an interview he gave CNS and said the private sector must “play its part in providing work for those civil servants whose departments are sold, reduced, merged or cut to prevent further socio-economic problems in the local workforce”.

Cayman’s Premier, Alden McLaughlin, praised Moxam for his comments and said they were “very helpful and encouraging.”


Google, Yahoo and others are getting fed up with government gag orders

By Sean Buckley From engadget

The EFF may be handing out gold stars to firms that publish their own transparency reports, but earning that recognition isn’t easy. Government data requests are often coupled with gag orders, barring firms from telling users that security agencies are thumbing through their data. Now Google, Yahoo, Microsoft and Facebook are arguing that these orders are a violation of the First Amendment.

Naturally, the government disagrees, pointing out that the nondisclosure requirements of its security requests have been applied tens of thousands of times without issues. It further argues that “hypothesizing scenarios in which the NSL [national security letter] statue might conceivably be applied unconstitutionally” doesn’t make it unconstitutional in actuality. It’s a secret investigation, the government says; there’s no First Amendment right to distribute information related to it.

The companies are appealing the case, and say they don’t want to put the security investigations under the public eye — they just want their users to have more detailed statistics about the the volume and type of information the government demands. Both Google and Yahoo have separately promised to continue to push the issue, each arguing that users have a right to know when their data is being examined.

For more:


Cayman businessman wants ERA bidders to consider solar energy

The Cayman Islands Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA) has selected five qualified bidders to provide power to the current electricity provider but local businessman, Mark Hennings, says he wants government to reconsider the bidding process to include solar as a source to provide the 36 mega watts of power.

He is concerned all the bids will only use diesel as the source and is asking everyone to write to the Members of the Legislative Assembly.

Hennings is proposing to start up his own solar energy plant.


PlaceAVote wants to replace politicians with internet polls

By Terrence O’Brien From engadget

Congress’ approval rating sits as low as 10 percent, depending on which poll you trust. So a bunch of engineers and developers came up with a uniquely Silicon Valley solution — replace politicians with software. We’re not talking about some advanced AI, though, so don’t start worrying about Skynet just yet. PlaceAVote is a simply a digital polling platform, which means there will still need to be a human being on the floor casting a vote. The first two candidates who pledge to simply vote whatever way the internet tells them are already on the ballot in California, and 20 more are supposedly on tap for 2016.

If any of those candidates win they’d then have to find a way to get a private key code out to each and every one of their constituents. That key along with a unique identifier, such as social security number would be needed to log into the PlaceAVote system, which makes security one of its biggest priorities. Of course, no system is 100 percent secure and PlaceAVote would certainly face its fair share of challenges from hackers and those looking to commit voter fraud it it enjoys even a modicum of success. The entire premise requires voters have regular access to a computer for this attempt to shoehorn direct democracy into a representative system to work, which will definitely be problematic is poorer districts around the country. And while well intentioned there’s a pretty good case against direct democracy in general; just because something is popular doesn’t mean it’s good (see Modern Family). In many ways having an elected representative is saving us from ourselves.

For more:

EDITOR: I wonder if this solution could be adapted to replace Cayman’s MLA’s?



Courtesy call by Swiss Consul General

swiss consulCayman Islands Premier Hon. Alden McLaughlin, left, greets Consul General of Switzerland Andreas Markus Maager, who is based in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. Mr. Maager was in the Cayman Islands this week making courtesy calls to Government officials. As Consul General of Switzerland in Atlanta, he has jurisdiction over several states in the Southern United States, as well as the Cayman Islands. Besides serving some 4,000 Swiss nationals in his jurisdiction, Mr. Maager represents and promotes Switzerland and Swiss interests in the Southeast, with a particular focus on clean technologies, exchanges and collaboration in the fields of science research, education, trade and investments.


Switzerland-Cuba Association decries Zunzuneo subversive project

Geneva- The Switzerland-Cuba association Geneva’s section condemned the secret program of the United States Agency for International Assistance (USAID), called Zunzuneo, which was targeted at boosting subversion and destabilization in the Caribbean country.

It is evident that the US government does not give up its effort to destroy the Cuban Revolution, if necessary by the flagrant violation of the national legislation, and the international regulations, noted the organization in a communique released today.

Recently the Associated Press agency revealed the creation by USAID of a social network like Twitter in Cuba, which functioned between 2010 and 2012 that was targeted to create an artificial opposition and launch demonstrations calls to foment the outbreak of a political crisis.

Through this project, mainly aimed at the youth, were collected private data of subscribers to be used with political aims, recalled the association and added that the users never realized that the service was created by the US government.

It is shamefulness to see that Zunzuneo is not the only platform created with that purpose but others can be also mentioned such as Piramideo, Martinoticias and Cuban Journal, which remain active, pointed out the association.

Once again the Geneva’s section of the Switzerland-Cuba Association once again joins the Cuban people in the denunciation of this type of illegal and covered actions also rejected by the international public opinion.

The release added that the US government must respect the international right and purposes and principles of the UN charter and put end to this type of actions. (Prensa Latina)

For more:


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