Is there a Governance Crisis at the NZCTU? – An Observation by The Owl
Over the last few months 2 of the 6 (technically) affiliated unions (NZ Meat Workers Union and Maritime Union of NZ) who get to vote on David Shearer’s future have been put under the spotlight by the Registrar of the Incorporated Societies. It has been proven they have both failed to file complete returns with the Registrar.
The NBR also questioned a 3rd union, the EPMU, on their balance sheet regarding a Pike River Trust. The EPMU have been reporting losses and the EPMU Education and Training Trust fund for members remains solvent only because the EPMU does not demand the $6M loan back as qualified by their auditors. (The Trust assets are approximately $3M.)
A number of so called affiliate unions to the NZCTU have been reporting losses, failing to declare income for GST purposes and generally been late with their financial returns. But to be fair some unions are good at compliance.
The ultimate responsibility of the NZCTU is to their members. Are there governance policies in place at the NZCTU head office to manage its individual unions when they fall out of line?
The Owl asks, is there a governance crisis? Here is a great example of good governance by a governing body.
When the Otago Rugby Union got into trouble – the NZ Rugby Union went down there, told them to sort themselves out and if they didn’t the NZRFU would liquidate them. The Board was changed and a number of people stood down. This is good governance from the top and Otago flourished on the field in 2012. The word on the street is it is a pretty happy camp now – a good dose of “tough love”
The Owl believes the Labour Party Executive should demand that the NZCTU develop a good governance model to manage their affiliates if they want to get 20% of the voting rights.
The Labour Party Executive can exercise their governance control and meet with the NZCTU just like the NZ Rugby Union did with the Otago Rugby Union.
Current day unions only represent between 6-9% of the workers in private industry. Does this means the Labour Party is being distracted by pleasing a few when actually they are missing out on potentially serving the 94% of working voters?
The Owl is looking forward to analysing the results of the Labour Party Conference