UKIP DEBATE: Should We Extend The Interim Leaders Term?

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37 Responses

  1. Sean says:

    I would like to see Gerard stay on.

  2. Russell Hicks says:

    I saw Peter’s suggestion, good UKIP common sense. Stuff the rules, the building is on fire.

  3. David Allen says:

    The constitution is the legal framework around which the party is run and every member has the absolute right to expect the rules to be adhered to without variance. There is no reason whatsoever to mitigate a breach of the constitutional rules.
    However, it seem that our NEC have made a habit of doing that and leaving the party wide open to multiple law suits, which the party would lose. It’s a prima facie situation against which there is no legal defence. Already every candidate who lost a deposit could sue the party for the return of that money as an unconstitutional use of funds has already been made by funding Jane Collins’s libel case, that also broke the rules by allowing AMW to stand, are about to break them again by not holding NEC elections on time and are suggesting breaking them again by riding roughshod over the leadership election rules.
    An organisation that breaks it’s own rules cannot survive.
    There is no discretion, no valid reason, no circumstance that makes this ok. It is wrong morally and in law.
    Hang on for the litigation to begin.

    • Rob McWhir says:

      NEC elections have to be held by end April. Have you heard this will not be so?

    • Geoffrey Bastin says:

      Where is the legality from changing the rules to suit a serious situation. Too much is talked about legality where none is applicable.
      The party constitution is there to be changed if the need arises. You may be correct in mentioning the Jane Collins case and we must wonder who decided to spend party funds on such a stupid case. Even now with a large bill outstanding I wondering why we don’t allow Jane Collins to file for bankruptcy rather than the party facing that possibility.
      But there again these are not questions of legality but internal considerations.
      What we want now is for Gerard Batten to announce some simple changes such as reducing the membership fee to £15 and scraping the Lion logo and reverting to the Pound sign. The NEC will be considering the leadership and NEC elections when it meets on Monday.

    • John Francis says:

      Mr Allen, where exactly do you come from with your views on matters UKIP?
      You championed Henry Bolton in the face of overwhelming reasons why he was not the man to lead UKIP and now you seem to be encouraging legal action against the Party over sensible proposals to steady the ship.
      I ask again, where do you stand on matters UKIP?
      What is your agenda?

  4. forthurst says:

    What UKIP cannot afford is any further internal elections without the Party having been converted into one that can function entirely online such that all candidates will be required to publish their entire CV online rather than the selective and in some cases untruthful ones with which we have been furnished in the past. I have heard on the grapevine that the outgoing Chairman believes that approximately five members of the NEC are duds. The NEC cannot afford to have anyone on board who is not as sharp as a whistle to avoid some of the grievous errors of the past; however, with the limited space in Independence magazine is very difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff and when people put themselves forward for re-election there is no means of knowing whether they were any good in the first place. There are many talented people in UKIP whom the Officers have no means of identifying whilst some mediocrities hang around for too long..

  5. John Carins says:

    In the current circumstances, this is an excellent suggestion.

  6. Rob McWhir says:

    Sorry, Alan, but it’s specified in the constitution, and the only way to chNge that would be 2/3 of memers voting in favour.

    Whatever the merits, therefore, it’s not going to legally happen.

  7. Simon Platt says:

    I don’t think we can extend the interim leader’s turn, for the constitutional reasons cited. There needs to be a leadership election called within 90 days, with the chosen leader to have a 4-year term.

    I should be very happy for Gerard to stand as permanent leader. Given the widespread support he seems to have within the party, I might even be very happy if he were to be the only candidate and elected by default. But I do think that an election has to be called.

    That’s the plain reading of the constitution, so far as I can tell, informed by comments I’ve heard made by others who I think understand the issues well and who have more expertise than I do. Does Peter Whittle know better? (That’s not a dig at Peter, by the way, but a sincere question.)

  8. Alex H says:

    Although not a general election, May is still local government elections.

    Would it not be healthier to allow possible
    leadership candidates to shine in their respective
    local government campaigns or by their support of
    UKIP candidates. And to do this before a leadership election conclusion at Autumn conference.

    Conversely. UKIP is in a bit of a mess and hasn’t got a brand message together on the right wavelength for local government elections. A leadership Election will predictably leave the new leader picking up the pieces after a disappointing 2018 local government Election.
    But also a leadership campaign will be a distraction and a parallel narrative to put UKIP policy across. Therefore an early leadership contest could be themed on how candidates would tune UKIPs policies and approach to the local government campaigns if leader.

  9. Ian Hensman says:

    I would not throw the idea out completely as I can see a bit of continuity from it. It would, therefore, make sense for a bit more imput from the coalface to avoid being accused of railroading the idea.

  10. Serena Lonton says:

    Provided this is done legally, then go for it. The longer Gerard is in charge, the better chance UKIP has of a settled future. My vote is yes.

  11. Bob Hill says:

    Yes UKIP may be dead but I do not intend to give up I want out of the EU and do not want to pay for the privilege of trading with them unless they pay to trade with us.
    I think it is a good idea to extend our temporary leaders term and assume there is a legal,way to do it.

  12. Mike Green says:

    This is another example NEC incompetence. They knew the consequence of a VONC and went ahead anyway. The constitution states it shall be held within 90 days. The constitution can only be changed by a full member vote, so suck it up.

  13. Bob Hill says:

    I forgot to add that I have renewed my membership even if our party is very weak at the moment.

  14. MIKE MAUNDER says:

    YES, YES, YES ! Due to the electoral timetable, it is necessary. Make an amendment to our rules to make it happen, and ensure that Gerard Batten is our interim leader. This will make such a change to recent months.
    UKIP now has real work to do, now that the bolt-on extra has been unbolted and thrown away. The Party must be ready to do its job towards getting the Party to be all that it can be.
    With the Tory Party in a mess over Brexit, and now Labour at long last making their decision to mess it all up further, the way should be open for this Party to do well !

  15. Ian Williams says:

    Would be a sensible suggestion in normal circumstances? However to break the rules now would be a poor response after jettisoning HB.
    Let’s get it done and dusted and move on!
    If we could get to the point of only one candidate, we could get it done and get on with what we do best – campaigning!!!

  16. David Weaver says:

    UKIP has to rebuild and rebuild quickly but that does not mean cutting corners . Those wishing to stand for the leadership must submit their CVs Directly to the NEC within a given time scale for vetting to ensure the candidates have no skeletons in the cupboard before going to press. Our main purpose is to ensure we leave the EU on UK terms. The UKIP terms are quite clear they are the same terms tha were voted on and won the referendom, therefore the message does not alter. What UKIP requires is a strong Leader who listens and speaks with conviction for all UK citizens no matter of creed, colour or religion.

  17. John Bickley says:

    The Party has to have a leader elected by the members; that’s at the core of our constitution. The Interim Leader is an NEC appointed leader until such time (within 90days) the members elect a new leader. Not following the constitution would open up the party to a potential legal challenge, which it would certainly lose.

  18. PETER HEATHER says:

    As I have already said, let’s show Gerard he is the man that we want to lead the party there would be no need to extend the period to 180 get behind this man he is for the party, haven’t we lost enough time.


  19. Peter Harvey says:

    I think it would make a lot of sense to extend his position as interim leader. For a start, we cannot afford another costly election for a new leader and, as said previously, if there was only one candidate this could be sorted asap. Mr Batten comes across as a no nonsense, intelligent kind of person & I like the fact he is on television to talk about the party & not his private life. Go for it

  20. DEREK HAWKER says:

    All very unfortunate as I voted for Henry Bolton as by far the best candidate.
    As with numerous other political figures over the years he failed in his responsibilities and also failed to keep it in his trousers
    All very sad.
    However it is quite clear in the constitution that 90 days is it.
    There is no time to change the constitution so we must get on with it.

  21. Jules says:

    A Leader election IS a distraction for those of us with Local Elections.

    But Rule 7.5 is crystal clear:
    “Such election shall be held within 90 days of the completion of the Leader’s term of office.”

    It doesn’t matter whether a lot of us would like an extension.
    It would only take a handful of members to challenge an extension – and they would be right.

    In short, extending the 90 days would be an uphill struggle – a waste of mental energy better applied to the Local Elections.

    We should make the best of the hand dealt and hope that an authority (Nigel ?) urges all potential Leader candidates to include a theme around the Local Elections and how local democracy :
    a) is in line with bringing home decision-making
    b) the only currently realistic platform for spreading the Brexit message

    Any candidate decliniing to endorse such a “Brexit First” message or attacks colleagues, risks being accused of putting personal ambition before Country and Party.

    AFTER the Local elections, we must start with the Rule requiring any Rule cahnge to have support from 2/3rds of ALL members.

  22. Rhys Burriss says:

    ‘The Constitution requires that elections be held within 90 days’.

    Doubtless this is correct.

    However, my question is ( and it is a genuine request for info from someone who might know the answer ) what exactly is the SOurce of the Constitution ?

    We are often told that ‘UKIP is a Limited Company’ ~ so where and what is the relationship between UKIP as a Company and its Constitution ?

    So, for example, IF the Constitution has been brought into existence, following the creation of the Ltd Company, BY the directors ( at the time ) of the same Ltd Company, then do not the Directors of the Company, existing in time prior to THEIR adoption of the Constitution take some sort of priority ?
    Ie , IF the Directors created the Constitution in the first place do they by virtue of that fact have a legal right to change that which they created ?
    As I say, this is just thinking out loud. I do not off hand know the answer but would welcome enlightenment ?

    John [ Bickley] do you know ?
    Or anyone else from the NEC ?

      • Rhys Burriss says:

        I have read it, thank you.

        BUT ~ it doesn’t really answer my question as to where exactly the Constitution comes from ?

        WHO first wrote the Constitution and where does it stand in relation to UKIP as a Company ?
        Let me pose a hypothetical question which may illustrate what lies behind my original Query:

        Let us say, for the sake of argument, that instead of the Constitution providing for amendments needing to be approved by 2/3 of those voting, it instead had been written so as to provide for amendments requiring approval by 95% of the total membership ( not just those voting ).

        Let us say that nobody noticed this at the time and it was approved by a vote of the membership.

        You would then have in place a millstone Constitution which could never ever ever be amended.

        But what would be the legal status of such a Constitution ? Vis à vis UKIP as a Limited Company ?

        Surely there would have to be some mechanism, a legal mechanism, for invalidating the 95% provision ?

        But what would t hat mechanism be ?

  23. Emily says:

    Our local NEC member has to be one of the ‘duds’.
    A CV that made Bolton’s look the genuine article.
    Up there yet never known to have deigned to deliver a leaflet.
    Taking on an office – barely doing a scrap of work – putting most of the responsibilities on to surrounding branches and their workers.
    Then up to the next level……
    Bolton was never vetted.
    It would seem the CVs put forward for the NEC are not vetted either.
    We need hard workers on there not just the collectors of titles.
    Not folk who just happen to be the right gender or something to balance the council and being voted for blindly by the honest who will believe self written fantasy – being honest themselves.
    Candidates good for self promotion and nothing else.
    With people like that – who are allowed to con the membership as did Bolton – its no wonder that some have held the NEC in contempt.
    There must be some criteria to check whether they are the ‘real deal’ and not just free loaders after position and able to fib their way up.

  24. Fiona Blackwood says:

    YES to Gerard Batten.

  25. Roger Turner says:

    Sure an election must be held in 90 days.
    But I would be equally sure the arrangements for the election are not completely cast in concrete.
    For instance I seem to remember the constitution required an EGM to be held in certain circumstances, but I also remember there was provision for the rules to be altered as necessary.
    I would consider it iniquitous if similar relaxation couldn`t be adduced in for instance a crisis situation. I understand the company`s circumstances are in such a parlous state that the Directors would not be carrying out their bounden and legal duty to take all measures to protect the stability of the company, failure to do so would be dereliction.
    New Rule No.1 – Only founder members will be allowed to stand for leadership and must not have been a leader previously.
    That should ensure only Batten stands.
    Don`t apply Rob.!

    • Rob McWhirter says:

      I recall the Christmas vacation Michael Holmes rang to make the same case to me! (The rumour of my intending to stand was as reliable as Mark Twain’s obituary 🤣). That still holds now, although given how MH ended up, maybe I SHOULD have stood…?

    • Jules says:

      Why are you ” equally sure the arrangements for the election are not completely cast in concrete.” ?
      Rule 7.5 is crystal clear:
      >>Such election shall be held within 90 days of the completion of the Leader’s term of office.<>  The NEC may from time to time make rules concerning the organization of such Party structures which are not provided for in this Constitution. <<
      i.e. "Rules …. NOT … in the Constitution"
      … and the 90 day Rule is in it !

      I wish it were different …
      … but please can we turn our efforts towards the Local Elections.

  26. urquhart says:

    If UKIP died it would have died with dignity , the lab/lib/con/brussels lost that chance many years ago.
    By all means Gerald batten should get an extension, we are, in UKIP on a war footing, not only with brussels
    but most definitely also with the current lab/lib/con coalition party.

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