(CMR) Premier Hon. Alden McLaughlin today announced the names of the three Caymanians who will be in charge of Cayman’s Customs and Border Control Agency and new Coast Guard. The appointment of the Director of the New Customs and Border Control department and the Commander and Deputy Commander of the Cayman Islands Coast Guard shows that the Government is delivering on its promise to transform the RCIPS Marine Unit into a Cayman Islands Coastguard Service.
We are now able to confirm that former police superintendent Robert Scotland will be the new coast guard’s commander, and the former leader of the RCIPS Joint Marine Unit, Leo Anglin, will be his lieutenant.
These appointments round out the three spots for the newly created Customs and Border Control Agency and the Cayman Islands Coast Guard – two new government units. The Customs and Border Control Agency will oversee both the immigration and customs functions at the ports and airports.
We announced earlier today that Charles Clifford will be the director of the new border agency. At a press briefing earlier today, Premier Alden McLaughlin said they would be operational by January. The coast guard will comprise of about 40 officers and be operated as an independent unit wit its only allocated resources but the police commissioner will have ultimate responsibility. It will focus on the detection of boats arriving in Cayman waters with drugs and guns, as well as illegal immigrants. Its officers will also have the ability to board and search vessels in local waters and make arrests. They will also be in charge of search and rescue operations.
“The idea of our own coast guard began to take shape under the Progressives-led administration in the last term of government,” McLaughlin said. “We committed to it in our manifesto and today we are publicly putting our dream into reality.” He added that there had been “a lot of behind the scenes work to get us to this point”.