PPI Takes Help from PPAU to Arrange Online GA
The Pirate Parties International (PPI) Board and Pirate Party Australia (PPAU) will cooperate to conduct an online General Assembly meeting on (or before) 15 March 2015, according to minutes of the most recent PPI Board meeting.
On 5 January 2015 PPAU proposed an agenda item for consideration at the PPI Board meeting scheduled for the following day. The proposed item requested that the PPI Board consider and vote upon a motion to hold an online General Assembly meeting. The contents of that motion are noted in the Board’s minutes.
The motion, which was declined in favour of an alternative motion, would have involved the board resolving “to begin an online GA by the end of February at the latest” and would use “Andrew Norton’s asynchronous GA proposal […] as the basis of draft rules of procedure”. The motion stressed that plans should be developed in collaboration with interested parties.
PPAU stated in its email to the Board that it was willing and able to assist, which would include providing services and help to formalize Norton’s proposal into draft rules of procedure, as well as ensure all procedures comply with the PPI statutes.
Despite this motion being declined, the PPI Board passed a more concise motion that reads:
PPI Board decides to hold an extraordinary GA primarily with the goal of giving the PPI Members the opportunity to decide on PPI’s membership fees. This should happen before March 15th 23:59 GMT. Pirate Party Australia is invited to conduct the online GA in consultation with at least one member of the PPI Board.
The discussion at the Board meeting indicated that while the Board was mainly concerned with resolving recent issues relating to the collection of fees, other proposals would be able to be put forward at this meeting. In this regard, the matter of fees acts as the impetus to hold the meeting. The decision of the Board to work closely with PPAU may reflect an increased willingness for the Board to defer functions to its members, but time will tell.
Meanwhile, an undercurrent of tension within the PPI Board appears to continue. In an email from a member of the PPI Board and obtained by Pirate Times, they state that although initially optimistic that PPI’s problems could be resolved, their view has changed as they have learned more being privy to the internal workings of the Board.
The Board member criticised the lack of transparency regarding finances and the unwillingness of certain other members of the Board to address these issues. Their investigations into PPI’s banking situation, including the blockade on the organisation’s Belgian bank account, are ongoing. The member alleged that the Czech Pirate Party is refusing to hand over any surplus funds from the Prague General Assembly conference in 2012 until PPI’s banking arrangements become transparent. These concerns may hamper PPI members’ willingness to approve the instating of affiliation fees.
The Board member further alleges that other Board members were critical of PPAU. The email states that it was said that the Australian Pirate Party “is not even a party, those are two kids just making some noise” — the email identifies the “two kids” as the current PPAU President Brendan Molloy and Press Officer Mozart Olbrycht-Palmer (the latter of whom is the author of this article).
It is unclear what impact this may have on the working relationship between PPAU and the PPI Board. The motion passed by the PPI Board requires that at least one member of the PPI Board is involved in the planning of the online GA, and both the current PPI Co-Chair Koen De Voegt and Chief Administrative Officer Thomas Gaul expressed interest in being involved at the Board meeting. Pirate Times will report on any significant progress.
Featured image: CC BY-NC-SA compostite from PPI and Taran Rampersad
About Mozart Olbrycht-Palmer
I've been a member of Pirate Party Australia since 2011. I am the current Press and Inquiries Officer, and was previously on the board of Pirate Party Australia, as well as overseeing policy development. I was also once a member of the Pirate Parties International Court of Arbitration. I have a degree in music, and am nearly finished a degree in law. I live near Sydney.