Wed | May 27, 2020

NJ board set to discuss eligibility rule

Published:Tuesday | August 13, 2019 | 12:00 AMRobert Bailey/Gleaner Writer

After mounting pressure from the local clubs, Wayne Shaw, director of Netball Jamaica (NJ), said the organisation’s board will be meeting in the coming weeks to discuss one of the clauses, which speak to the eligibility of NJ presidential candidates.

The matter has become a topical issue among club members, who are hoping to erase the clause in NJ’s constitution that stipulates that in order for one to become eligible to run for the post of president, he or she must be an elected member of the board for at least two years.

Shaw told The Gleaner yesterday that the matter was briefly discussed at the association’s board meeting last Saturday, and so the organisation will be meeting in the coming weeks to look at it further.

“It came up in the board meeting under ‘any other business’, but it was not ventilated and so at the next meeting, we are going to go through it, which is later in this month,” said Shaw.

“I think that it can be looked at because it restricts other people who might want to run, and so I think it is very restrictive. It is something that has been for almost 20 years and so, let’s see what happens,” he added.

Speaking on the matter, former President of NJ Marva Bernard outlined that this clause was voted into the constitution by the clubs between 2000 and 2001 under then President Molly Rhone.

Bernard, who served as NJ’s president between 2005 to 2015, said the time has come for this clause to be removed from the constitution.

“When this was put in, it would have been agreed by the members at the AGM, because the constitution can only be amended by the approval of the membership,” said Bernard.

“So back then, the members agreed for this to be put into their constitution. Twenty years later they are saying, ‘no we don’t want it anymore’ and that is their right,” she said. “I think the time has come for it to be reviewed and if that is how the members feel, then fine. I think that it no longer serves the best interest of the organisation,” Bernard said.

Robinson, the favourite

Meanwhile, Tricia Robinson, who is the first vice-president of NJ, is the favourite to take over the presidency of the organisation from Dr Paula Daley-Morris, who will not be seeking re-election at the AGM in November.

Robinson is among four board members who are qualified to contest the post of presidency under the current stipulations, with the others being Shaw, Janet Johnson, and Leonni Phinn.

However, the other three candidates have indicated that they will be not contesting the election, which leaves Robinson as the clear front-runner for the post at this point.