Peterkin advocates for whistle blowing bylaws

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A director of the Caribbean Corporate Governance Institute is calling for whistle blowing or good dispute mechanisms to ensure transparency, accountability and effective governance in civil society organisations, private sector associations and non-governmental organisations (NGOs).
Richard Peterkin, who is a Partner with Grant Thornton Windward Islands with responsibility for Tax and Corporate Services, made the call during the segment on yesterday’s Big Issues programme on OBSERVER Radio that dealt with the need for transparency in NGOs.
The topic for the radio discussion was sparked following media reports that three members of the Antigua and Barbuda Fishermen Co-operative Society have accused some of the organisation’s board members of violating the Society’s bylaws and of operating in secrecy.
According to Peterkin, huge reputational damage could be caused by the public’s perception of an organisation that has difficulty in resolving internal disputes.
“In your bylaws, you must have good dispute mechanisms that would either try to deal with it by yourself or with an arbitrator, or a mechanism where you can go to the monitoring regulatory organisation to say we are at a deadlock and we need your intervention to resolve this.”
OBSERVER media received a copy of a letter that was sent by the three members to Morvin Williams, the director of co-operatives, at the Financial Services Regulatory Commission (FSRC), requesting the official to intervene and support the removal of the three board members.
It is claimed that the three board members – the president, treasurer, and secretary – are violating the bylaws of the society. The accusers point to evidence, which indicates that the board members have membership in a competing entity, the Antigua Fisheries Limited.
The last election for the Antigua and Barbuda Fishermen Co-operative Society was held on July 20, 2014.
(More in today’s Daily Observer)

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