A year ago, the Governor’s Office was playing defence. Questions swirled around the sudden removal of Anwar Choudhury, the then representative of the Queen in the Cayman Islands.
Mr Choudhury was recalled to London with very little being said at the time and concerns being raised that the saga was shrouded in secrecy. Prior to that, he was busy integrating into island life and made waves as he cleaned fish at the fish market in George Town. Eventually, he was removed, and details emerged over what led to his demise.
His successor, Martyn Roper, has settled in comfortably in the role and has gone about his business – at least in public – in very much the same way that Mr Choudhury did, embracing his role in the Cayman Islands and appearing to love every minute of his time in the sunshine.
Like Mr Choudhury, Governor Roper got active in touring the Islands and integrating with locals. He’s upped the social media game with his regular posts and, in very much the same way that Mr Choudhury created a buzz for his fish market theatrics, Mr Roper has embraced another Caribbean tradition – playing the steel pan. He even performed on the pan during the recent Queen’s Birthday celebrations.
And while the path is similar, one cannot help but feel differently about how Mr Roper has conducted himself on island. After all, he was saddled with the burden of replacing a postholder who was accused of not being as nice as he portrayed himself publicly.
The current governor has come across as a friend of the Cayman Islands, and if we take him at his word, is an advocate for this British Overseas Territory, particularly on matters of the environment and financial services. We wish him the best as he goes about his duties. As long as he remains as warm as he comes across when one meets him, he’ll have fond memories of his time living on arguably the world’s most beautiful beach before moving on to represent the UK’s interests somewhere else in the former British Empire.
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