Make elec­tion null and void

Deniliquin Pastoral Times - - NEWS -

Sir, As a scru­ti­neer at the re­cent Mur­ray Ir­ri­ga­tion Ltd direc­tor elec­tions I would like to ex­pand on the cov­er­age of this is­sue in the PAS­TORAL TIMES on Fri­day Oc­to­ber 27.

Firstly, as a MIL share­holder and lo­cal food pro­ducer I am ex­tremely con­cerned not only about the en­tire elec­tion process, but also other is­sues.

In my view it was in­ap­pro­pri­ate for a mi­nor­ity of three di­rec­tors to pub­licly sup­port two in­cum­bents in this elec­tion, but not a third.

I don’t want a MIL Board that is not pre­pared to ac­cept and an­swer le­git­i­mate ques­tions, whether th­ese are from a fel­low direc­tor or share­hold­ers.

In re­la­tion to the elec­tion scru­ti­neer­ing, one won­ders what the com­po­si­tion of the incoming MIL Board would be if my­self and Shane Rin­gin were not present when votes were counted. Would the dis­crep­an­cies have been iden­ti­fied and rec­ti­fied?

I still hold the view that the vote should be de­clared null and void and a new elec­tion held, and that this fresh elec­tion should be for the en­tire MIL Board, not just those who were in­volved in the re­cent elec­tion.

This would clear the air and give the com­pany an op­por­tu­nity for a fresh start af­ter what has been a tu­mul­tuous year.

Re­mem­ber, this is not the first ma­jor is­sue within the Board room in 2017 dur­ing which, among other con­cerns about var­i­ous as­pects of the com­pany, we’ve had a chair­man re­placed and a highly qual­i­fied and re­spected in­de­pen­dent direc­tor (Dr Shar­man Stone) sud­denly re­sign.

We have also had what the Board refers to as an ‘in­de­pen­dent re­port’ which was avail­able to the com­pany the week be­fore last and has been used as the ba­sis in at­tempts to re­move another direc­tor.

The re­port was also used to jus­tify the de­ci­sion not to endorse Direc­tor James Sides dur­ing the re­cent elec­tion.

How­ever, if it wasn’t fi­nalised un­til the week be­fore last, as we have been told by the MIL Chair­man, why was it used as the ba­sis for not en­dors­ing Direc­tor James Sides via a let­ter from Deputy Chair­man Ben Bar­low dated Oc­to­ber 10?

This let­ter was ob­vi­ously sent be­fore the re­port had even been fi­nalised.

Se­ri­ous ques­tions must also be asked about the brief­ing or terms of ref­er­ence around this re­port and why it has not been made avail­able to all com­pany share­hold­ers.

Who was in­ter­viewed for the re­port? How were the re­sponses recorded and com­piled? How did the re­port’s au­thors come up with their rec­om­men­da­tions, and what were th­ese rec­om­men­da­tions?

In the in­ter­ests of trans­parency I pub­licly call on Mur­ray Ir­ri­ga­tion Ltd to re­lease the full re­port, es­pe­cially as it is the ba­sis for the Board’s ef­forts to re­move another direc­tor at next month’s pro­posed EGM.

The MIL Board of Di­rec­tors has re­cently ac­knowl­edged its is­sues with ‘dys­func­tion’. I be­lieve share­hold­ers want full dis­clo­sure of the re­port around th­ese claims so they can make their own judg­ments. Sir, Un­sur­pris­ingly, the re­sult of the MIL elec­tion, and its an­nounce­ment, gen­er­ated quite a bit of dis­cus­sion in your pa­per last week.

As one of the can­di­dates can I take this op­por­tu­nity to make a cou­ple of ob­ser­va­tions.

There was an an­nounce­ment of my re­elec­tion and then the news that there had been an er­ror and that I had in fact been un­suc­cess­ful.

Re­luc­tant as I am to quote him, I think for­mer prime min­is­ter Paul Keat­ing summed it up best when he said: ‘‘When faced with the choice be­tween a con­spir­acy and a stuff-up . . . al­ways choose the stuff-up!’’

In a nut­shell, the an­nounce­ment of the elec­tion re­sults was a stuff-up! We all make them.

The best way to deal with them is to fol­low five sim­ple steps: ad­mit it; fix it; learn from it; get over it; move on.

In a rather per­verse way MIL share­hold­ers can take heart from the fact that a mis­take was iden­ti­fied, rec­ti­fied, and the cor­rect re­sult was es­tab­lished.

I for one have faith in the in­tegrity of the vote and the fi­nal re­sult of the elec­tion.

Last Wed­nes­day I con­tacted both Phil Snow­den and Waan­der van Beek of­fer­ing my warm con­grat­u­la­tions on their suc­cess and wish­ing them all the best in their new roles.

I am con­fi­dent that both Phil and Waan­der will bring new ideas, keen in­tel­lect and in­tegrity to their roles as di­rec­tors.

I am happy to state that I be­lieve in elect­ing th­ese gen­tle­men MIL share­hold­ers have put the com­pany in good hands and a cul­ture of sta­bil­ity, de­sired by so many, can be at­tained.

When the new Board as­sumes re­spon­si­bil­ity at the AGM on Novem­ber 28 I would en­cour­age both the MIL and wider com­mu­nity to join me in sup­port­ing the en­tire board and al­low­ing it the clear air re­quired to achieve sta­bil­ity, har­mony and fo­cus its at­ten­tion on the is­sues that re­ally mat­ter.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.