Ward still pushing for FIA electoral reform

David Ward has backed a proposal by several FIA member clubs to reform an electoral system that could see the presidential candidate frozen out of the 2013 leadership contest.

The clubs want to reduce the amount of support a candidate needs to gain in order to be nominated, a requirement that could yet preclude Ward from contesting the upcoming election. The deadline is November 15, and Ward has yet to confirm that he has been nominated and is thus able to take on Jean Todt.

Ward has written to other clubs in support of the new proposals, noting: “…a candidate now has to submit a list and support nominations totalling 37 compared with 24 in last election. This is excessive and increases the democratic deficit in the FIA’s election system. Fortunately some clubs have now tabled statute amendments to significantly reduce the size of the list and nomination requirement to seven.”

He’s also pointed out how hard it will to gain acceptance for the proposals, which follow similar attempts in previous years.

It is likely that the FIA leadership will try to block the new statutes reforms. They will propose referring them to the Statutes Review Commission and encourage the World Councils to oppose a vote at the General Assembly. Whilst the World Councils should be able to make recommendations on statute changes tabled by clubs, in my opinion they should not be allowed to block them. To do so would abrogate the sovereign authority of the General Assembly.

Rather than wait for more internal review the FIA membership now has the opportunity to vote for change. If approved the 2013 reform proposals will reinvigorate the FIA’s democratic system making it less complex and time consuming but crucially also more accountable and fair.

I strongly believe that governance reform rather than who will be the next FIA President is the major issue of the 2013 election. I would, therefore, strongly encourage your club to vote in favour of the statute changes that will now be on the agenda of the 2013 General Assembly.”

Even if the changes are voted through at the December World Council meeting it could be academic as far as the leadership election is concerned. However, it could have an impact on the vice-presidents, as they would have to be elected separately – and thus there would be fewer World Council members in place due to the patronage of the president.

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