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Cayman Islands premier Panton ousted

Julianna O’Connor-Connolly is the New Premier

United People’s Movement secures the government

By Aliya Dunstan    

GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands – A new political group, the United People’s Movement (UPM), made of up 12 existing Members of Parliament has come together under the leadership of Julianna O’Connor-Connolly as premier and Andre Ebanks as deputy premier. Former premier Wayne Panton will be nominated to the role of speaker of parliament. 

Her Excellency, Governor Jane Owen was duly notified of this transition and has accepted the composition of the new administration, comprised of 12 Members: 

United People’s Movement secures the government

Juliana O’Connor-Connolly MP: Premier and Minister for Finance, Education, District Administration, Lands and Cabinet Office

Andre Ebanks MP: Deputy Premier, Minister for Financial Services & Commerce and Investment, Innovation & Social Development

Kenneth Bryan MP: Minister for Tourism & Ports

Johany “Jay” Ebanks MP: Minister for Planning, Agriculture, Housing, Infrastructure as well as Transport & Development

Sabrina Turner MP: Minister for Health & Wellness and Home Affairs

Isaac Rankine MP: Minister for Youth, Sports and Heritage

Dwayne Seymour MP: Minister for Border Control & Labour and Culture

Katherine Ebanks-Wilks MP: Minister for Sustainability & Climate Resiliency

Heather Bodden, MP remains the deputy speaker as well as a parliamentary secretary to the ministries of tourism and ports and social development. 

Bernie Bush, MP graciously offered his position in cabinet to former speaker Katherine Ebanks-Wilks and he will remain with the government.

Outgoing minister Bernie Bush was pivotal in the reconfiguration of this government and all members of the UPM thanked him for his unwavering dedication and passionate advocacy for the subjects of his former ministry. McKeeva Bush, MP will also sit on the government’s backbench. 

This represents a reconfiguration of roles to emphasize the group’s shared ideals, as they work together in pursuit of the Government’s five broad outcomes for the people of the Cayman Islands:

  • Improve the Quality of Life for Caymanians;
  • Enhance Our Competitiveness While Meeting International Standards;
  • Modernise the Government to Improve Public Sector Performance;
  • Future Proofing to Increase Resilience and
  • Protect and Promote Caymanian Culture, Heritage and Identity. 

The premier, cabinet ministers and the back-bench member also want to thank the former premier Panton for his dedication and service during the past two and a half years, particularly managing the country in the second half of the pandemic and successfully reopening the country’s borders. Members of the UPM are confident MP Panton will offer the country a great service as the new speaker of parliament.

“One of the key aspects of this smooth transition is the retention of the existing cabinet ministers, as a testament to the group’s commitment to continuity and stability. The UPM is determined to be innovative and to accelerate the delivery of results for the people of the Cayman Islands,” said premier Julianna O’Connor-Connolly.


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