THE BORD NA MONA CRISIS

 

A chara I know something about Bord na Mona, having been for almost 40 years a member of the board and Chairman for the last 15 years, before I retired in 1974. Prior to being appointed as one of the three directors in 1936 I had made a trip to Sir John Purser Griffith's pioneer work in Turrau in 1926, and to Shatura in Russia in 1936.

During my time as Chairman, when new members were appointed to the board, it was part of my duties to explain to them their rights and obligations. When they sat down to a board meeting (once a week), they were collectively responsible for all the activities of the Bord. When the meeting concluded their functions, such as rights and obligations, ceased, and they were utterly debarred from giving interviews about the affairs of the Bord.

While the Board was in session each member was entitled to be given all the information he or she requested and this was a basis and fundamental entitlement which could not be denied. Likewise each member was bound to accept the majority decision of the Board or to resign.

In the present crisis I would suggest (if anyone asked for my opinion) that the only honourable action for each Board member, other than the new Chairman, was to offer his or her resignation to the Minister, so he could appoint a new Board capable of running the operation. Yours, etc., Belgard Road, Clondalkin, Co Dublin.