If you listen to the show you will have heard last night that the Chairman of Football West Bob Kucera finally replied to my letter dated 11 February, it only took him 68 days! Then again maybe my letter asking where the response was may have prompted him to actually show some courtesy.
His reply was pretty much what I expected once again advising that the position of CEO of Perth Glory being on the board is not a conflict of interest. We know the current incumbent has resigned from the board but the situation needs to be resolved for the future, but he and his board do not see a problem with this.
The second issue raised in my original letter was the terms of office that our board members are elected for, four years. This was fine in the initial setting up period but I believe should now come back to three or two year terms in line with most boards, a move the former Chairman was in favour of, but never implemented.
At the 2009 AGM when this was raised the response from the board was that they could not change the constitution without consultation with the FFA, which seems ridiculous as the FFA couldn’t give two hoots about the game at grass roots level. However at that time, with the World Cup Bid on the table FIFA had said that they had to ensure that all state constitutions were the same, so that was the plan. A Year passed and all of the state bodies continued to have different constitutions.
Mr Kucera stated in his letter “as re-affirmed at our Annual General Meeting, we will be undertaking a review of our Constitution – again in line with the FFA and other federations throughout the country – and during this process, members will have the opportunity to make comment on appropriate changes which there are many.”
There are many who believe now the World Cup bid is dead in the water this will never happen across the country. Football fans better hope that it does and need to show a great deal more notice than when the current constitution was drafted.
It flies in the face of many of the Crawford Report’s recommendations and sees power handed to a group of people who run rule over the game for a possible eight year term, and once elected there is very little you as stakeholders can do to remove them.
The current constitution is one of protectionism, and a lack of accountability. Many boards publish their minutes – or edited versions of them – for the stakeholders to see what is being discussed. Has anyone involved in football here ever seen the minutes, or even been allowed to see them? The new video clip with the Chairman was created to try and abate the clamour for minutes to be made available and the stakeholders to know what those charged with running the game are discussing.
People have asked for “extra” expenditure reported in the Annual report, but no response is forthcoming four months down the track. Why not?
The Standing Committees and Zone Representatives were recommended by Mr Crawford for a reason, but good people have walked away because their comments are ignored by the board. In other words they are not listening to those representing the people in the game. These representative bodies were however allowed to fall over or not have correct accounting procedures of their own, because that suited the powers that be who saw them as a hindrance rather than a help.
If the football players, administrators, parents, referees and all other facets who fall under the auspices of Football West want to have a say in how the game is run they need to be involved in the drafting of the new constitution. They need to demand a Special General Meeting where the majority can have their say on the future of the game. The key is issue is one will have to be called to pass the new Constitution.
If we allow a similar document to be passed and approved then it may be another seven years before another such opportunity arises.