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Election of General Secretary

16 September 2016

An election for the five year term of office starting 2nd January 2017 must now be held. .


Circular No. 150 dated 08th August 2016, invited prospective nominees for the position of General Secretary to indicate their interest. Two such expressions of interest were submitted by the closing date, and the names and Branches of the individuals who responded are as follows:

1. Manuel Cortes Central & Head Office Branch

2. Wayne Geoghegan Central & Head Office Branch

This additional arrangement does not preclude any Branch from nominating candidates whose names do not appear on the list of those declaring their prior interest in being considered, or any other eligible candidates from accepting nomination. Neither does it mean that any individual who has expressed an interest has been nominated.

The Executive Committee have now agreed the following timetable for the election in accordance with Rule 48.

Closing date for receipt of nominations: Wednesday 26th October

Date for issue of Ballot packs: Thursday 03rd November

Closing date for receipt of voting papers: Wednesday 30th November

Nominations are therefore invited from Branches for the post of General Secretary. Rule 48(b) provides that each Branch has the right to nominate a candidate for the office of General Secretary from within the membership of the Association. A candidate’s written and signed consent indicating the candidate’s willingness to accept nomination by Branches must be submitted by the candidate to this office not later than the date upon which nominations close i.e. Wednesday 26th October 2016.

Nominations should be submitted on the attached nomination form. This form must be completed in full and signed by both the Branch Chair and Correspondence Secretary and returned in the special envelope provided marked “General Secretary Election”.

Candidates are advised to read Rule 48 dealing with the election of the General Secretary very carefully. Please note the following in particular:

"Rule 48 (c) A candidate shall only be eligible to stand for the position of General Secretary if that candidate received 5 or more nominations, including at least 2 nominations from Branches in different Divisional Council areas. A candidate satisfying the conditions in the Rule 48(c) shall be referred to as a Qualifying Candidate.”

No member of the Association is eligible to be nominated for the position of General Secretary unless they have been a member of the Association for a minimum period of three years on the date of closure of receipt of nominations.

The provisions of Rule 47(c), should be specially noted by Branch Officers who are asked to ensure that these are brought to the attention of members accepting nomination for the office of General Secretary for their action.

Please note that letters of acceptance must be signed by the candidate. emails will not be accepted. It would be helpful if candidates could supply a recent photograph of themselves along with their biographical details and personal statement.

I would also draw particular attention to Section 48(8) of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 which states: “No-one other than the candidate shall incur any civil or criminal liability in respect of the publication of a candidate’s election address or of any copy required to be made for the purposes of this section.”

Section 46 of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 imposes the requirement that a General Secretary has to be elected or re-elected within five years of the last election.

In the event of more than one nomination being received in respect of the election for the position of General Secretary, the election will be conducted by individual postal ballot of the membership in accordance with Rules 48. The Electoral Reform Society will carry out all the responsibilities of the Independent Scrutineer, should an election be necessary, and all matters concerning the production and distribution of election material and the receipt and counting of ballot papers must be referred to them directly at an address which will be provided.

Branches are reminded that the Executive Committee have agreed that candidates for election may have their forenames or other names by which they wish to be known printed on the ballot paper and in associated TSSA communications. It will be the responsibility of the candidate to make clear to the Association’s Scrutineers how they wish to be known (i.e J Smith/John Smith/Joan Smith etc). Candidates must include this information with their individual letter of acceptance.

The Association’s Scrutineers have rules that nominations will only be accepted if the written consent of the nominee is available in this office no later than the closing date for nominations i.e. Wednesday 26th October 2016.

The Association’s Scrutineers have asked me to indicate that the determining factor in any dispute as to the date of receipt of nomination will be whether or not the special envelope containing the nomination paper is clearly post-marked prior to Tuesday 25th October 2016. If the special envelope reaches Head Office after the closing date and there is no post mark or it is indiscernible, the Association’s Scrutineers will regard it as not having been posted on time. If the special envelope is hand delivered to Head Office the person handing in the envelope must ensure that the envelope is date stamped by a member of the TSSA Head Office staff and a receipt obtained.

Nominations, where made, should be posted using First Class services immediately after the Branch has made its decision. Nominations must be made on the form provided. FAX COPIES, PHOTOCOPIES & EMAILS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.

The Executive Committee recently agreed a code of conduct for all EC and national officer elections including General Secretary. A copy of the code is attached to this circular and can be found on the TSSA website.

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