Thursday, November 5, 2009

MCA crisis setting wrong precedents?

In all instances of associations registered under the Societies Act 1966, the highest authority governing the running of the associations shall be the AGM and the EGM. All decisions or resolutions reached at a properly convened AGM and EGM must be followed by the associations including its members.

In the case of the latest MCA crisis, an EGM had been properly and legally convened, restoring the membership of DS Chua Soi Lek but not his position as the Deputy President. DS Liow Tiong Lai had in the interim been appointed by the CWC to act as the Deputy President. It have to be made clear that such appointment on Liow can only mean an appointment to act as ACTING Deputy President.


The decision of the EGM reinstating Chua Soi Lek as a member of MCA must actually be followed with all the reinstatement of his position prior to the disciplinary actions taken against him. The EGM should have also resolved that Chua be put to status quo and that the decision to appoint Liow to the post of Acting Deputy President by the CWC should never have arisen at all. Unfortunately, during the EGM, none of the legally qualified members of MCA had thought of alternative resolutions in the event that Chua be reinstated as a member and the the disciplinary action against him revoked!

To get the Registrar of Societies to reinstate a person to a post in an association is making a mockery of the powers of the members as conferred by the Constitution of the Association. Such action shall only be taken if the EGM held was in the first placed convened in an illegal manner or in a manner against the constitution of the association.

As an a analogy, if members of an association had voted in either an EGM or AGM, as legally provided for in the Association's Constitution, to do away with the post Deputy President of that Association, the ROS have no right whatsoever to declare that the post be given back to the previous holder. The ROS must merely record such resolution and act in its regulatory duties to record such decision of the EGM or AGM of the Association in its proper register and nothing more!

Chua Soi Lek had by way of a properly convened EGM been given back his membership in MCA. The EGM convened should have proceeded further to vote for the reinstatement of his position to status quo i.e to the Deputy President post. It should have been done in same EGM by way of an alternative resolution either by the CWC itself or from the floor.

It was not done as it should have been, but to get the ROS to interpret the minds of the members present during the EGM, i.e if a vote was taken on putting Chua Soi Lek to status quo, will mean creating a bad precedent! The ROS must not step into the shoes of the members at the EGM!

DS Liow Tiong Lai must also be informed that his position as Deputy President was merely in an acting capacity. If the constitution of MCA states very clearly that the post of Deputy President shall be elected, then, the CWC shall have no authority to appoint safe in the appointment of an acting capacity in the even of a casual vacancy created in the manner it had happened to MCA.

It is not a question of whether the ROS is ready to go to court or not. It's a question of MCA not been given proper legal advice as to how to convene a proper EGM and the fact that they had never considered alternative resolutions as in alternative prayers when lawyers plead their cases in Court.

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