(CMR) The Cayman Music & Entertainment Association (CMEA) has announced the cancellation of its third annual thanksgiving profit concert amongst controversy that emerged on social media over the past few days. The event was to be held this Saturday 30th November, on the East End Heritage Field at 6:00 pm.
Allegations are that long-standing President Sean Eric Smith (Notch) acted without the knowledge or permission of the manager when deciding to pick this yr’s beneficiaries, Renwick and Jolly Conolly. In actual fact, multiple committee members have indicated that they had no knowledge of the event in any respect and the manager members were largely kept in the dead of night. Not only were committee members completely unaware of the planning of the event but quite a few industry working being called upon to donate their time and equipment were allegedly misinformed.
Further, indications are that the event was being promoted on the radio and social media without the permission and knowledge of the Conolly family despite using their name on printed flyers, Radio Cayman and Breeze FM. There was even a radio interview on a neighborhood talk show promoting the event.
Exclusive CMR sources indicate people approached Renwick Conolly and he shared with them that he was unaware that his wife was the beneficiary of the event. One source shared that, Conolly, a neighborhood musician himself, seemed to be shocked once they mentioned it. Initially, they figured it might have been planned as a surprise profit until they saw the beneficiary’s names getting used to advertise the event. Conolly was also one among the musicians slated to perform on the event.
Jolly Conolly has a serious medical issue some years ago that has left her permanently disabled after a medical procedure. It seems that Conolly needed to resort to social media as a way to make clear his position.
After this post, several CMEA executives commented and indicated their position and obvious lack of expertise of the fundraiser as well.
Further commentators indicate their shock and surprise on the revealing posts and congratulated Renwick for speaking out and setting the record straight. Calling Renwick a person of integrity they appeared amazed at the style through which the profit concert was being handled and demanded that the association president “needs to clarify this mess to the general public”.
As an alternative of offering a proof, the event has now been canceled. This morning, the CMEA has issued a press release indicating that the event is now canceled and thanked the assorted individuals which have committed to assisting with the profit concert. One such one that actually confirmed on Facebook that they providing the fireworks services was Graham Rankin. He shared that he was told that the event was to learn the Conolly family.
The emailed statement gives no reason for the cancellation of the event and reads partially,
“To the Members and Friends of the CMEA, we thanks all in your ongoing support and stay up for seeing you all again at our next Profit Concert, to be announced within the not too distant future.”
Rankin spoke exclusively to CMR and explained that he was told by Notch that the profit concert was being placed on some weeks ago they usually wanted his assistance with fireworks. He indicated he was completely satisfied to supply his services pro bono due to who the reported beneficiaries were. Renwick and his family are from East End and are held in high regard however the community there and beyond.
Musicians were organized and your complete East End community was being informed of the scheduled fundraiser event. Sources shared that Conolly was not willing to simply accept assistance that he doesn’t need presently and actually, he was specifically told by Notch that he was not the beneficiary of the fundraiser but was simply slated to perform on the event.
Shockingly, CMR has now learned that the press release was allegedly penned by the president alone and other executive members weren’t aware of it. Executive member Michael Wilks also commented on the Facebook post indicating this press release demonstrates a “no remorse for these actions” and confirms it “was not issued by the CMEA as a collective.” He further shares his apologies for the situation.
Individuals conversant in the situation indicate that they are usually not surprised by “this latest rogue move by Notch.” In actual fact, they shared that for the past ten years during his presidency this has been “an ad-hoc association, highjacked by one man”. The source further notes:
“It’s incredibly unbelievable that one person can try to run a non-profit organization as if it’s their very own personal company. There was no accountability or professionalism throughout the time that Notch has been answerable for the organization. In actual fact, members are even confused about which structure is currently valid. Rules are modified and made up on a whim.”
They further alleged that the financial standing of the organization needs to be audited by the Cayman Islands Government, its biggest financial donor. They suggest that the minister chargeable for this must put aside any personal relationships he can have with individuals involved and ask some tough questions. Stating:
“Funds are given from the Ministry of Culture annually with no accounts having been submitted and even accounts which are submitted are questionable at best and false at worse.”
The overall consensus is the present board that has been in place for a few yr is now uninterested in the shortage of accountability, respect, and superiority complex they allege is rampant. One person shared:
“Corruption is actually rampant in our people no wonder we get taken for a ride.”
Interestingly enough, CMR has complaints in regards to the CMEA dating back to January 2017 from a number of the younger members of the association who felt that the organization was not representing their interests. At the moment they shared:
“CMEA fails as a regulatory body”
CMR understands now that moves are being made to shake up the manager and take away Notch as president. We reached out for comment from Notch but none was forthcoming on the time of publication.