Monday, September 15, 2008

Comments on the 2008 Interim Election Guidelines

Fulltext of the 2008 Council Interim Election Guidelines can be viewed from PLAI-CaVRLC.

The following are my observations/comments:

1. The date of election is October 13-15, 2008 (Choose any Date).

Why not simply state that council election must be held between September-October 2008 or/on before the stipulated deadline of October 31, 2008 as submission of elected Council Officers. The 2-months window will give enough time for the concerned Regional Council to plan and maybe organized a Seminar-Workshop or Forum to coincide with the Regional General Assembly (RGA). Does it mean that if RGA will be held before or after this date, the elected officers are null & void? Or this is again a case of a promulgated guidelines not to be strictly observed as in past practices?

2. Officer to be Elected (President, VP, Secretary, Treasurer, Auditor, 2 BOD)

In the copy given to Regional Councils of the new PLAI By-Laws, Art. II Section 3 states:

Each Council shall have seven (7) members of the Board of Trustees, hereinafter referred as Council Board, and shall elect from among themselves the following officers: Council President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer and Auditor. (underscoring mine)
So, how come that on this election guidelines, we are directed to elect the President, VP ... etc. when the approved By-Laws is crystal clear that these position will be elected from among the elected Council Board of Trustees (CBOT). That during the RGA, the general membership will elect only seven (7) Council Board of Trustees and not the Council officers mentioned in the guidelines as it was the previous practiced and was unanimously retained by the HOD in its interpretation of this provision.

3. No mention of the NBOT representative per Regional Council to be elected by the RGA.

In the new PLAI By-Laws, Art. VII Section 2 states:

The members of the National Board of Trustees shall be elected by the House of Delegates from among themselves. The Chairperson of the House of Delegates shall be an ex-officio member of the Board who does not have a right to vote.

Never heard of this provision (revised?) during the HOD deliberation of the proposed By-Laws and radically differs from the photo finished product presented and approved by the General Assembly last November 14, 2007.

My understanding of the highlighted provision is that members of NBOT will come therefore from HOD? and Regional Councils need not elect its NBOT representatives as previously practiced? This is an absurd interpretation and run in conflict to other provisions in this new By-Laws.

In the "dirty copy" of the By-Laws presented and approved by the General Assembly last November 14, 2007, it says that there will be 16 members of NBOT elected wherein 1 NBOT per regional council.

But in Article VII section I of this "clean copy" By-Laws says there should be 15 NBOT members, but we have 16 Regional Councils (RC) . Does it mean 1 RC will not have an NBOT?

If we go along the previous practice of electing NBOT representatives by council, how do we then select our new NBOT in the absence of clear guidelines and rather different By-Laws provision from what was presented and approved with minor modification by the General Assembly? Or does it mean that current NBOT members will still be our interim NBOT serving for another two (2) years term without being re-elected?

Does this mean the era of PLAI-NCRLC having the most number of NBOT are over? In this current NBOT, Mrs. Suzima L. Gonzales, Mrs. Belen Vibar, Mrs. Fe Abelardo represent NCRLC . What are the long-term implication of this new provision in the viability of the association? If in the present practice, quorum in difficult to achieve wherein 3 NBOT are from NCR much more if only 1 will be from NCR?

The "dirty copy" of the PLAI By-Laws is a departure from the old practice wherein the National HOD will no longer elect who will be the members of NBOT instead it will rank (1 NBOT per Regional Council) the top eight to hold executive function while the remaining eight (8) as member of the board of directors. In this "clean copy", the provision offers a new interpretation, that instead of the guidelines clarifying, the opposite is happening.

4. On section J of this 2008 Election Guidelines
... proclaim all winning candidates who will form the 2008 Council Board [of] Trustee[s] and Council NOMELEC Members.
In the deliberation of HOD for the NOMELEC, it was agreed that six (6) months prior to the next election, NBOT or CBOT will convene the NOMELEC to take charge of the elections related activities. Hence, no need to elect the members of NOMELEC this coming RGA.

It seems (I do hope I'm wrong) whoever prepared this Guidelines didn't read and re-read the "dirty copy" of the By-Laws approved by the General Assembly last November 14, 2007, much less this "clean copy" resulting to inconsistencies in the interpretation of the provisions.


Written earlier but self-embargoed for later posting. Waited for other colleagues or the PLAI-National to take notice of the inconsistencies in the issued guidelines versus the new PLAI By-Laws. But then PLAI-BRLC posted an email notice in the yahoogroups quoting from the 2008 election guidelines thus the need to post this article to generate discussion and possibly rectify the interpretation of the provisions before the scheduled Regional General Assembly (RGA).

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