Boycott fallout 2

June 22, 2007

Andrew Morgan charges the Provisional Congress Business Committee (PCBC) with “incompetence” and “gross manipulation” of the agenda of the inaugural University and College Union congress (Letters, June 8).

The PCBC allowed the amendments to the academic freedom motion to stand as they were and, in our opinion, they did not negate the original motion.

The PCBC did not oppose (or support) any motion. Our role was to assess the legitimacy of motions and amendments against the rules and standing orders governing congress.

The PCBC put the boycott motion on the full congress agenda because the motion instructed the national exec­utive to take action affecting all branches and local associations, and congress alone is empowered to do this.

The PCBC placed rule changes at the end of business because this is where they best fit given timetabling constraints. It was not our job to ensure that congress representatives stayed until the scheduled end of business.

We reject any accusations of “discrimination”. The PCBC assessed all items of business against the same criteria, and the fact that there were no motions condemning ter­ri­tor­ial occupation by states other than Israel indicates only that none were submitted.

More generally, if Morgan had any problems with the proposed agenda it was open to him to challenge them.

We suggest that before Morgan again makes unwarranted and insulting charges of incompetence, gross manipulation and discrimination he get his facts straight, reads the rules and understands the operation of the body he derides.

Randy Banks
Essex University
Angie McConnell
Wigan and Leigh College on behalf of the UCU Provisional Congress Business Committee

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