Submitted by NUPW Insider
Sometimes in an effort to remain relevant and to appear as the expert on an issue an active participant can reduce a well-developed argument or contention to its most simple terms. It was this sense of banality I felt when the comments assigned to the name of Caswell Franklyn appeared on the blog. Caswell’s effort to introduce a party affiliation bias as a factor in the selection of a replacement for Maloney is quite unfortunate.
Caswell has identified all the current actors (Forde, Murrell, King, Maloney) as DLPs and since I do not know any of them or their political affiliation beyond their involvement in union business I will have to take Caswell at his word. So where does this revelation leave us in the drive to bring sound management to the NUPW?
In the first instance the concern at this stage of the NUPW’s election and as a consequence immediate future, should be about competence, honesty, ability to articulate members interests, a sound understanding of the NUPW rules and regulations and a willingness and acceptance that democracy and inclusive deliberation will strengthen the union.
The selection of a president or any other executive must be about the above qualities rather than political affiliation. Is Caswell Franklyn advocating that people who support a political party should not lead an institution or once the affiliation is known they should be avoided? Coming from a man who has served the interest of a political party all his life and is now the chief and principal officer in the UNITY trade union, this offering appears to be a knee jerk response from a usually sound Franklyn. Can the member of Unity expect him to be less than professional because of his party membership, “Cawmere” tie or are we to conclude that his union’s membership is made up only of his party affiliates?
The second issue that this unfortunate side track raises is the element of an appreciation for the intellect of the membership of the NUPW. Is Franklyn assuming that the average John public servant affiliated to the NUPW is so unintelligent or so distant from common sense that he or she would not understand the difference from political, religious or lodge affiliation and the use of that relationship to affect decision making? Is Franklyn saying that the union must ascertain a person’s political ties before contesting election to serve?
I think not and I believe that Franklyn does not think so either. While I have no idea why Franklyn would introduce this matter at this time what the fear is that this diversion will confuse the electorate to such an extent that the required change at the top will not be achieved and the membership will be saddled with more of Maloney and Clarke and a reinforcement of the confusion that has stalled the NUPW over the last eighteen months or so.
My boy Franklyn your affiliation to and knowledge of the NUPW have kept the public on top of the NUPW saga and at no time did anyone challenge your party affiliation and the motive behind the effort. At no time has anyone questioned the motivation for the hard work you have been putting into this effort. It would not be fair for anyone to determine that you had any other motive than the change of direction of the NUPW. Your introduction of the political affiliation questions motivation, honesty and integrity and I doubt you would want to suggest that these candidates do not meet your high standards in these human qualities.