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The Editor Speaks: New governor. New hope?

With the sourness that has arisen between the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and ourselves after the departure of our short termed previous governor, it was with anticipation and hope I attended the Reception at Government House last Monday.

Hope that we weren’t going to be given the typical colonial autocratic career motivated UK civil servant. The one who listens and instantly forgets.

New Governor, H.E. Martyn Roper, after looking at his credentials seemed to fit the above; however, after meeting him, listening to him and hearing from our Premier, I have hope.

Premier Alden McLaughlin, before introducing Governor Roper to the very large crowd in attendance, repeated some of his remarks he had uttered at The Legislative Assembly in the morning. This included the contentious issue revolving around same sex marriages and the challenges over the Financial Sector’s secrecy problems the UK’s British Parliament have sprung upon us.

He also said he hoped the new governor would stay for a much longer time as he had now served under as many as McKeeva Bush, now the sitting Speaker of the House, and now felt as old as he is.

McLaughlin added Cayman did not need more disruptions. He hoped that when the time comes, for his departure, he would be able to provide the governor with a glowing reference.

He also poked a little fun at Cayman Compass owner, David Legge, who was one of the invited guests.

McLaughlin also thanked Deputy Governor Franz Manderson who had done a wonderful job in holding down the Fort and although they had their occasional differences he had the highest of respected for him and asked us all to give him a round of applause.

This was done by us with great warmth and Manderson gave a short address.

Governor Roper then spoke, also very briefly. Not surprisingly as he must have been very tired.

He said, “Governors are in a unique position, because it is really important they reflect the views and the positions of the territory back to London and be an advocate for those views and help encourage those views.

“People are incredibly friendly, and my first impressions are hugely positive. I heard a lot of good things about the Cayman Islands before I came. You have a lot to be proud of .”

He also mentioned the beautiful location where his new residence, Government House, is situated and the prospect of being kidnapped by the pirates at the Annual Pirates Week Festival.

Governor Roper is accompanied here with his wife, Elisabeth, and I found it strange she wasn’t introduced to us.

I am hopeful this new governor will serve us well and his stay will be extended. We do not want to go through all of this again and I believe Deputy Governor Manderson will agree with me.

IMAGES: New Governor, H.E. Roper, Premier and Dep Governor enjoying a joke, and some attendees at Government House reception. Credit: Georgina Wilcox.


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