Half Year Constitution Report to the EGF
Tony Atkins, Henric Bergsåker, Christian Gawron, Zoltan Kelemen, Zoran Mutabzija,
Jan van Rongen
The constitution of the EGF was last
amended at the AGM in Strausberg 2000. The Executive at the time asked the
notary Adriaan Helmig for advice on how to develop the constitution, resulting
in a report with mostly recommendations and general guidelines . Since then
a number of ideas and suggestions for further revisions, or even a complete
rewriting of the constitution have appeared. In a
report to the AGM in Zagreb 2002 and in the references therein, the suggestions
up to that point in time were listed , including the original motivations
for the suggestions. The constitution commission worked out a number of
proposals based in some of these suggestions and provided some preliminary
discussion of some of the others, all presented in a report to the AGM in St
Petersburg in 2003 . That report also contains the instructions for the
commission. In the following we summarise the status at the moment and present
some more worked out proposals.
We expect that either the EGF Executive
or the members will bring up proposals for voting at the AGM:s. Any proposed
changes of the constitution need to be circulated to the members at the latest
six months before the AGM, i.e. by the end of January.
2. Suggestions for
The following are the ideas which have been considered so far.
Suggestions S01-S16 are the ones which have appeared up to 2002 and were listed
in the report of last year . The points S17-S18 have been brought up within
the commission since then. Point S19 has been raised by Marc Gonzales and point
S20 has been brought up by the Irish member.
S01) Introduce the possibility to replace an EGF member with another
national go association, e.g. in case the old member is found no longer to be
representative of the goplayers in the country.
S02) State the transparency of the EGF more explicitly, in particular
to ensure that the correspondence of members of the Executive Committee is made
available to the members, as has been stated by the AGM:s in 2000 and 2001,
taking into account that most of the correspondence today is in electronic
form. A worked out proposal P02 was presented in St Petersburg .
S03) Change the requirements on nominations of candidates for the
executive, in particular not to require nomination of people already in office
for re-election. A proposal P03 was presented to the AGM in St Petersburg 
and voted on. It got 17 votes in favour, 3 votes against and 5 abstentions,
meaning that due to the requirement of qualified majority it was not accepted.
The votes against were from the United Kingdom, Italy and Romania. The British
Go Association has submitted a motivation to the commission and an alternative
proposal . The Romanian Go Association has stated that their vote against
was a mistake and that they will vote in favour of the proposal if it is
submitted again , hence it may be possible to achieve a sufficient majority
for the proposal if it is put forward again.
S04) Increase the length of term for the Executive Committee.
S05) Include an explicit statement in the constitution to say that the
EGF members should be democratic, following the statement by the AGM in 2000. A
worked out proposal P05 was presented to the AGM in St Petersburg .
S06) Add procedures to handle the situation if the executive resigns.
S07) Introduce election for non-Executive posts. The possibility
of electing members of the commissions
was preliminarily discussed in .
S08) Change the voting rules at the AGM to give the big associations
more weight, more in agreement with the number of members. A preliminary
discussion is found in .
S09) Change article 6 of the constitution to ensure that the meeting
can invite an individual to speak and remove the possibility to keep secret any
part of the AGM. A proposal P09 and some discussion is found in .
S10) Scrap the appeals commission.
S11) Make the auditors responsible for commenting on the performance of
the finance committee.
S12) Review the process of how the EGF
gets money from the members, so that it becomes clearer and more predictable
how much the EGF is to collect from each country and how many members each
association is to pay for, when to pay and what happens if the fees are not
S13) Review the process of proposals for the AGM, in particular to
allow time for preparation of alternative proposals if a motion has been
distributed only two months before the AGM.
S14) Introduce a possibility to make urgent decisions at the AGM on
matters which have not been announced two months before, taking due care by
qualified majority that decisions can not be made which can be contrary to what
they would have been at a meeting with all members gathered and with adequate
time for preparation.
S15) Modify the role of the Executive
Committee into a board of directors under a president. In this model, each
director would be responsible for a functional area, such as Corporate and
Finance, Information, Tournaments, Rules and Regulations and Development. Some
discussion is found in .
S16) Adopt the constitution of another organisation, such as FIDE, with
appropriate modifications. Some discussion is found in .
S17) Change the election procedures at the AGM so that the situation
when two or more candidates for an office get the same number of votes can be
handled. A proposal P17 was presented in St Petersburg .
S18) Clarify the role of the EGF commissions and the formalities around
them. Preliminary discussions are found in  and . The AGM in St
Petersburg agreed that the formalities around the commissions need to be
S19) Modify the election of the Executive Committee in such a way as to
encourage or enforce the election of a team which is prepared to collaborate
and work together.
S20) Modify article 6.3 to allow proxy votes at the AGM . A preliminary
discussion is found in .
S21). Article 21 in the constitution says that in the case of
liquidation of the EGF, it's assets should be divided between the International
Go Federation and the European Go Cultural Centre. Franco Pratesi has suggested
that the assets should in this case rather be divided between the EGF members.
Additionally the report to the AGM lists some proposed language
improvements to the constitution, mainly to make it more coherent and gender
3.1 Proposed change P18 in the constitution,
Commissions and Appeals Commission.
In article 9.1, change the phrase: "One
of the members must be appointed Chairman by the Commission." into: "One of the
members must either be appointed Chairman by the Committee, or elected Chairman
by the Commission."
In article 10.1, change:
"An Appeals Commission will be installed
by the AGM."
"An Appeals' Commission consisting of
seven members is installed by the AGM. Members of the Appeals Commission are
elected for three years and there can not be more than one national from any
country in the Appeals Commission. The Appeals Commission should elect its own
In Article 6.6, the agenda item "Creation
of new Commissions" is changed into "Creation of new Commissions or changes in
Motivation: Up to now, chairmen of the
commissions have not been appointed/elected by the commissions themselves, they
have been appointed by the Executive. The new phrase leaves both possibilities
open. Probably the intention was that the Appeals Commission should be elected
by the AGM, already when this commission was introduced in the constitution
revision in 2000. It makes sense that the Appeals Commission is installed by
the AGM, rather than by the Executive, since it is meant to deal with appeals
also against executive decisions.
This is also what notary Helmig
recommended . The additions to article 10.1 makes it more clear that the
Appeals Commission should be elected, since this has never happened so far. The
fixed number of members and the three year assignment makes the election
procedure less tedious. Presumably the members of the Appeals Commission should
be nominated and elected in the same way as the members of the Executive
("Officers of the EGF") and if someone resigns before his period is out there
can be a by-election at the subsequent AGM.
3.2 Proposed change P19 in the constitution, team
election of the Executive.
The proposed new phrasing of article 6.7
(proposals P03 and P17 of the previous report )
is changed into:
"Except in the case of re-election of the
Committee already in office, a list of candidates for the Committee must be
proposed by at least one member Federation in good standing, seconded by two
more member Federations and the candidates must confirm their willingness to
occupy the posts for which they are proposed, together with the other
candidates on the list. The nominations should take the form of complete lists
of candidates for all the intended positions in the Executive Committee and
have to be communicated to the Secretary at least two months before the AGM.
The lists of candidates for office must be circulated by the Secretary together
with the Agenda. The election of the
Committe shall be by secret ballot if there is more than one list of
candidates. If there are more than two lists of candidates and no single list
receives an absolute majority in the first round, the list that received the
fewest votes will drop out and the vote will be taken with the remaining lists.
The same procedure is then repeated if necessary. If it results that two or
more lists of candidates in the end get an equal number of votes, the Committee is selected by drawing of
Motivation: The suggestion S19 was
motivated by an impression that the Executive has not been working like a team
and that this has impaired its efficiency (reference 15 in ).
If complete lists are nominated, then
presumably teamwork is encouraged. Moreover, the recurring question of how many
members the Executive should have finds a natural solution in that lists with
any desired number of candidates can be proposed.
3.3 Proposed change P20 in
the constitution, proxy votes.
In article 6.3, the phrase: "Every
delegate shall be a member of the Go organisation he is representing, and
nobody shall represent more than one Go organisation."
is changed, either into:
a) "Nobody shall represent more than one
member organisation at the AGM".
b) "Every delegate for a member
organisation must be a national of the country that the organisation is
Motivation: In recent years there have de
facto frequently been voting by proxy at the AGM:s. Membership is not easy to
verify and can be arranged ad hoc anyway, so the rule against proxy votes is
not effective. To allow proxy votes would make the constitution follow the
present practice. It also has the advantage of not excluding members from the
right to vote on geographical grounds, and that majorities will be more
independent of where the congress is held. If proxy votes are not desirable, it
is preferable to require citizenship, since this is at least easy to verify.
The commission has worked out eight concrete proposals
based on the 21 suggestions that have been registered so far. Some additional
points have been given preliminary discussion. The intention is to continue
working out proposals and registering new suggestions during spring, preferably
also to discuss more long term strategy for the constitution and perhaps to
collect some statistics on the constitution of other similar organisations. A
new report will be prepared for the AGM in Tuchola.
(Items indicated with (A) are attached to
this communication. Items indicated (D) have been distributed to the EGF
members on earlier occasions. Copies of any of the documents can be provided if
 Starting points for a new constitution, annex 10 to president's
newyear letter 2000. (D)
 Henric Bergsåker, Report to the EGF Annual General Meeting 2002:
suggestions for a new or
revised constitution (D).
 Constitution Commission, Constitution Report to the EGF Annual
General Meeting 2003 (D).
 Comments by Simon Goss and Tim Hunt on proposal P03 (A).
 Comments by the Romanian Go Association on their vote on proposal