Article for Amateur Radio magazine accepted by Editor – then removed.
An OTY (Over to you) letter was submitted by former WIA Treasurer Chris Chapman for inclusion in the next edition of AR magazine. After a few editorial changes, Editor Peter Freeman agreed on the 12th October to publish the letter in the November issue of AR.
The letter was removed prior to publication. The editor has advised it was not his decision, and provided a clear explanation, but requested that we not publish his explanation.
Let’s just say that external influences played a part. Draw your own conclusions….
In his “WIA Comment” for November AR Magazine, the President said:
By the time this magazine is published, no doubt there will be lots of information supporting the yes case for bringing in the auditors, and/or the no case to forgo the significant expenditure.
There is NO information supporting the Yes case available to members through OUR journal.
A copy of the censored letter is presented below. Please forward this newsletter to every amateur you know and ask them to take an active interest in our representative body. Ask them to visit our website and register to receive this newsletter direct.
Please forward this email to your local club and friends. We need your help to reach out to every single WIA member. Take a copy when you meet local amateurs for a coffee. If they contact Feedback@wiarg.org we can send them a newsletter direct.
Stay up-to-date with news and progress; – visit www.wiarg.org .
Until next week,
WIA Reform Group
Ps. We don’t want to spam you. Send us an email if you’d prefer we remove you from our mailing list.
Open Letter to members of the Wireless Institute of Australia – 12 October 2016
Dear Fellow WIA Members,
I was Treasurer of the WIA during the first two months of 2016. The Board appointed me as I had suitable experience and qualifications for the role. I hold a B.InfoSys. and have over 20 years professional experience managing complex projects and commercial outsourcing contracts (including Financial Management) in small and large corporations. More recently I have been an advisor to small business and have been Treasurer in a not-for-profit Incorporated Club with similar turn-over to that of the WIA.
Following my appointment and an initial period of inspection and review I presented the Board of the WIA with a list of findings and concerns over the manner in which financial processes had been mismanaged. I advised a series of actions to remedy these concerns. The Board was not supportive of this report and deliberate efforts were made to stymie and stonewall my efforts. The board refused to acknowledge significant issues relating to good governance and conflicts of interest.
I resigned due to ethical and professional concerns over the manner in which the Board of the WIA operated.
During my time as Treasurer I saw a number of cultural and organisational behaviours that should alarm all members.
I also attended the 2016 AGM on Norfolk Island in May 2016 and I present the following facts:
- The Treasurer of the WIA was not in attendance and no reason was given for his absence.
- The Acting Treasurer advised members that he had no knowledge of accounting. (This may well represent a breach of the Corporations Act);
- In my view, there were numerous errors in the Financial Report and the Chairman was unwilling or unable to answer many questions either fully or accurately; (Ed: At the AGM, the Chair indicated that questions raised from the floor would be referred to the Treasurer to answer in due course. Questions submitted prior to the AGM were answered at the meeting.)
- I believe that the financial figures associated with the services of the Deed with the ACMA (Callsign Administration and Examination Services) were inaccurate. The Chairman was unable to answer questions relating to the Deed services figures. As of mid-October, the Board has still not provided an adequate explanation or addressed the errors; (Ed: See my comment above.) and
- Whilst the Financial Result showed a loss of $12,680, no adequate explanation was given for the reduction of almost $57,000 cash in the bank since 2014. I remain concerned that this Board has operated without a Treasurer attending any Board meetings since February 2016 and it continues to operate without any accurate Profit and Loss or Balance Sheet reporting. It is my professional opinion that the Board continues to make poor financial decisions and operates without basic fiscal oversight. The 2015 financial results reflect their inattention to responsible financial management.
ASIC have been formally advised of these issues and the complaint is being investigated. The ACMA are also concerned with the WIA’s Financial Reporting errors and are conducting their own review.
The President continues to assure members that all is well with the operation of the WIA and that any concerns raised by Directors Andrew Smith and Paul Simmonds are nothing more than a “difference of opinion”.
Despite what the President would have you believe, a major review of the operation of our WIA is, in my view, the only credible manner in which all members can be assured of the financial and business accountability of our national body. The investment in this audit is substantial, but given that it will review a three-year period and cover all major aspects of management and financial oversight, the cost is justified.
We cannot afford to continue making losses. It is my view that the proposed audit is the only mechanism for members to receive objective, independent advice.
I urge all members to vote in favour of the Audit; the cost will be up to $30,000 as indicated by one board member (viewed on a per member basis about $7 per member). Should you have any questions in relation to this letter, or wish to discuss the issues raised, please send me an email with your details and I will contact you.
Chris Chapman VK3QB