Anatomy of the PCC Election (Pt. 2)

April 2nd, 2014 · No Comments

Saturday, 15 March, was the changing of the guards for the Philippine Community Council of NSW (PCC-NSW).  Jun RELUNIA had a convincing win with 23 votes;  Peralta and Collado tied with 14 votes.

Relunia’s win negates the notion that you cannot run and win for President without going through the PCC ranks first.  Relunia, a long time community leader proved that “yes he can!”  And really, you only need a good head above your shoulders, oodles of common sense, the willingness to work and a good heart – and that’s already more than what others had.

Elected and joining Relunia on the 2014 Board are:  Vice President External:  Alric Bulseco (?); Vice President Internal:  Evelyn Beed (Cordilleras);  Secretary:  Darryl Swadling (Illawarra);  Treasurer:   Danny Peralta (Tagalog Assoc.); PRO:  Danny Rosales (PLCAA); Auditor:  Millie Banan (Ilocano);  Directors:  Emily Rudd (?), Mercy Jones (Illawarra), along with newcomers:  Jade Cadelina (OKOR), Bobby Lastica (Filipino Cooperative),  Rissa McInnes (Filipino Australian Consumer) and  Alex del Prado (Ilocano).  Elsa Collado (CRFCC) will remain on the Board as the Immediate Past President. (A question mark after the name indicates organization unknown as of press time).

Five days after the election, on 20 March at 4.42pm, Alric Bulseco sent an email resigning from the Board citing personal and health reasons.  However, on 22 March at 1.37pm Bulseco retracted:  ”By way of this email, I am retracting herewith my stated intention to resign from PCC.”

No nomination was received for the dreaded Treasurer’s position, which has been the brunt of PCC’s woes in 2013. Having failed in his bid for the presidential seat, Peralta agreed to accept the treasurer’s position and was unopposed.

To the untrained eye and the inexperienced person, the election seemed okay – despite the chaos.  But for those in the know, the nominees and the winners’ circle was ever so revealing. It was obvious that someone played musical chairs and slotted names into organizations whether they really belonged to it or not and some clubs were non-existent.

The constitution states that only one representative per affiliate can sit on the Board.  But by the looks of it, there are a few doubles and some have no clubs.  The fixers must have gotten so confused themselves and I have no doubt that they will be shifting club allegiances even after the election.

One nominee admitted that her nomination was placed in without their knowledge.  Another was representing a club that did not even exist.

For issuing  a cheque with only one signature – hers, Banan was elected ironically, as auditor. Some accepted Banan’s excuse of “the bank’s fault” but others  saw through the charade.  According to Banan, the bank made a mistake of not including Sayas’ signature.  So that was a bank mistake. But there were other signatories on the list.  Banan, a three-time treasurer, would have known that she needed two signatures to sign a cheque.  And the question remains as to who authorized the change of signatories from two to one?  However, the Financial statement of 2013 was not approved and the Body passed a resolution to investigate with the bank the change of signatories.

For his campaign speech. Bulseco stood on his soap box to rebuke those who dished out negatives and who tried to put PCC down in 2013.  According to him, people should support PCC, not tell what’s wrong with PCC. But there would be nothing to reveal, if there was nothing wrong.  Sweeping the wrongs under the carpet is out of the question.  There is nothing wrong with PCC – only the people running it who defy the constitution with a reckless disregard.

Collado, in her speech, attacked Peralta for conducting a brainstorming session on PCC without the permission of her Board.  That line of thinking was reinforced on the email loop by other 2013 Board members who “condemned” Peralta for initiating the brainstorming session. Relunia too, had been trying to call for a meeting to iron out the problems for months, but his attempts were stonewalled every time. Whoever gave Collado her words was way out of line or maybe did not possess the qualities needed to participate in such a brainstorming.

In case they have not noticed, it is a free country and people have freedom of assembly and free speech.  Rather than “condemn” those who had the initiative to analyse and evaluate PCC as an organisation, they should have been grateful and appreciative that somebody was interested still.  Funny how these people condemn good deeds, alienate supporters and yet do not condemn those who defied the constitution, the OLGR rules, and  signed cheques with one signature?  What kind of thinking is that?

There were no minutes of the last AGM; no presidential report from Collado;  and no copies of the 2012 financial statement.  Banan at least had copies for distribution of her 2013 financial statement and some sort of visual presentation that could hardly be read.  They should just have raffled the only copies that existed.

Oh well – all’s well that ends well. And tThere’s a little flicker of hope. As newly elected Relunia said on election day: “It’s a good day.”  We hope it stays that way.  On his shoulders now rest the task of reforming and rebuilding PCC, as he inherits the sins of the 2013 Board.

Photo:  Courtesy of Jade Cadelina

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