March 5, 2021

The Editor Speaks: Unfortunate response to OMOV from premier

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Colin WilsonwebI have to say I was very disappointed in Premier Alden McLaughlin’s response to the query regarding when the One Man One Vote (OMOV) would be tabled.

He answered that it is not a current priority and this was the reason it isn’t featured in government’s legislative agenda FOR THIS YEAR.

The premier must know it has been long felt even by his ardent supporters and more specifically by his enemies that he is at best only lukewarm to supporting a one man one vote i.e. single member constituencies.

He made it very clear his government would not be dealing with it in the near future and there was no timeframe for when the legislation would come before the Legislative Assembly.

Oh dear!!!!!

His first political blunder and it is a very big one.

I can support his comment that his top “priorities are getting people back to work, the local economy and stabilizing the country”.

However, I cannot support his logic in his curt response to an issue that is very important and is supported by the vast majority of the public, especially the very people who voted for him.

He has given fodder to his political enemies and I hope he will rectify his blunder very quickly with an assurance the OMOV will be top priority next year.

With both Arden McLean and Ezzard Miller champing at the bit to push it, they already have OMOV so why not? His actions and what he says after they have presented their private members motion will be watched with great interest.

I applaud Arthur Hunter’s comment in CNS and I hope he and CNS don’t mind me reposting it here – if you want to view the original and CNS’s story go to: http://www.caymannewsservice.com/politics/2014/01/23/omov-not-priority-cig

Submitted by Arthur Hunter (not verified) on Sat, 25/01/2014 – 11:20.

“I am somewhat surprised and dismayed to read your “OMOV not a priority for CIG”.  This does not surprise me, however, since I have held the view for sometime that the Hon. Premier does not really support the concept notwithstanding your statement of his denial to the contrary.  What is surprising to me is that he seems to be able to convince his PPM colleagues and the C4C members of his Government to defer this issue.  They have obviously forgotten that OMOV was an integral part of their election campaign platform and, in my view, played no small part in their election at the polls. It cannot be denied that getting people back to work, the local economy and stabilising the Country are important issues but I feel that OMOV is likewise such an important issued for the Country that it should share top billing with those other issues.  Given the time it will take to make the Legislative changes, make the necessary constituency adjustments and educate the voting public it is important that the Hon. Premier embark on this programme with minimum delay.  With many legal and intelligent minds at his disposal this should not be difficult to achieve.”

END

The Cayman Islands Chamber of Commerce have also expressed their disappointment even if it is a little diplomatically disguised.

“The Chamber supports the implementation of One Person, One Vote and single member constituencies for all electoral districts and urges the elected Government to implement electoral reform before the next election in 2017. The Government has three and a half years to implement the required legislative changes and we are hopeful that they will fulfill their campaign promise.”

To date McLaughlin has done a very good job but the cracks are beginning to show

Another unfortunate comment was when he gave a reason for his government not re-instigating the weekly press briefings was he did not see a need just so the media could take pot shots at government.

“If the media has questions, let us have them. I am not prepared to engage in a back and forth and let the media take pot shots at us,” was the actual comment.

I am sorry he feels the media are only here to fire bullets at government. He was very happy with the media, especially CNS, when he was leader of the opposition!!

The media asks questions of government because the general public is not in a position to do so.

So far the media, mainly, has been very supportive. In fact this is the only Editorial I have written since this government has been in power I have been even mildly critical.

It is most definitely not a “pot shot”. I will not have to advertise it when it is.

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