Many if not most NIPSA members will be unaware that earlier this year the (predominantly Broad Left) General Council and the then President (Padraig / Patrick Mulholland) decided, contrary to legal advice received from the NIPSA solicitors McCartan Turkington Breen, to expel & revoke the membership of two members.
Despite various questionable reasons having been put forward for the expulsions there are grounds to believe the reasons behind the expulsions were politically motivated. Both of the expelled members apparently hold political views which differ from those of the Socialist Party, the political party behind the planned takeover of NIPSA. They were identified as representing a threat to the planned takeover and were dealt with as such with the General Council and President using an allegation of a flawed membership admission process as the reason for their expulsion.
Apparently the two individuals have taken legal steps to have the decision on their memberships reversed. The General Council have sought further legal advice (using members subscription money) to try to bolster their position. Unfortunately for them the second set of legal advice is rumoured to confirm what the original legal advice stated.
This raises very serious issues and questions.
Why will the General Council not reply to letters from branches asking for a breakdown of the costs incurred so far?
Is this the future of NIPSA where if you disagree or show dissent or are perceived to think contrary to a certain political mindset you are expelled?
Where does this tie in with the supposed open, accountable “democratic union” we are being told we are to be afforded?
Will either Padraig / Patrick Mulholland or Alison Millar be up front and honest with the members and tell them what the legal advice was (both sets) and how much of the memberships monthly subscriptions have already been spent on what appears to be a futile exercise in political sectarianism and political bureaucracy and how much the solicitors anticipate the potential costs and reputational damage to be in the event that NIPSA is taken to task and loses?
Since Padraig / Patrick is making such a big issue out of financial accountability to members on what he might spend his additional salary on in the event that he wins the General Secretary election we can only but wonder why he and the General Council are so tight lipped on how they are spending our money in relation to this issue.
As for the sets of legal advice received, we’ve paid for them so we’d like to see them.