Premier to meet with opposition to hammer out issues related to Bill

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GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands, Mar. 12, CMC – Premier Alden McLaughlin is scheduled to meet with members of the main opposition United Democratic Party (UDP) on Monday to iron out issues on the key provisions of the Legal Practitioners Bill before the debate resumes in the Legislature on Tuesday.
According the McLaughlin, all opposition legislators have agreed to a private meeting.
The proposed amendments to the existing lawyers’ law has caused increasing controversy over the last few weeks, as independent opposition members have railed against the government and the local legal profession, making increasingly wilder allegations in relation to it.
These include claims that law firms hired private eyes to follow Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs) to discredit and intimidate them, and that the financial services minister cannot present the bill because he is part owner of a law firm building and therefore conflicted.
Although the Premier has enough legislatures on the government benches to force the law through without regard to the concerns raised, it’s reported that he is trying to get consensus so that the bill can be passed with support across the parliamentary floor.
“My objective is to succeed where two previous administrations have failed by giving the Cayman Islands a modern legal practitioners law. This must be a law that regulates the legal profession, supports and promotes the wide range of legal services provided by Cayman practitioners and encourages employment, training and opportunities for advancement of Caymanian attorneys,” he said on Friday.
The three main goals of the bill are to create a modern platform of regulations so the territory falls in line with international standards and get through the review by the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) later this year, to tackle the problem of the law being practiced overseas without oversight, and help in the development of local attorneys and put an end to inequities and discrimination.

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