Constitution update brings changes to Board structure

By Joyetter Feagaimaali’i-Luamanu ,

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Samoa Rugby Union (S.R.U.) Chief Executive Officer, Faleomavaega Vincent Fepulea’i.

Samoa Rugby Union (S.R.U.) Chief Executive Officer, Faleomavaega Vincent Fepulea’i. (Photo: Samoa Observer)

The Samoa Rugby Union (S.R.U.) Chief Executive Officer, Faleomavaega Vincent Fepulea’i, is adamant that a revised Constitution for the Union is a step in the right direction.

The new constitution was passed last week. It followed the work of a consultant from Australia who was hired by World Rugby. 

Part of the changes see the reduction of Board members from 15 to eight.

During an interview with the Sunday Samoan, Faleomavaega pointed out the amended constitution will be in line with the changes mandated by the Oceania and World Rugby.  

 “These are part of the final reforms that’s been ongoing for the last couple of years, the reforms instills principles such as good governance as Union members for Oceania and World Rugby.  

 “Since the game turned professional in 1996, the constitution has not been changed; yet the changes are necessary to be in line with more robust and up to date professional.” 

The S.R.U. currently has 15 board members; however the changes will reduce it down to eight. 

 “There will be four affiliated members Union of one from Savai’i and two here in Upolu. A woman nominated by an affiliated or affiliated Unions from outside the S.R.U. memberships." 

 “This is part of the mandates by the World Rugby where there should be a female representative on the board and three professionals; people with skillets of legal background, one in marketing and another with financial background."

 “There will also be an Appeals Tribunal (newly formed and members are elected by the voting members of the S.R.U.)." 

 “The board members will appoint the Chairman and the C.E.O. will be the secretary and the President of S.R.U. who are ex-officio,” explained Faleomavaega. 

According to the C.E.O., the previous board was all based on volunteers. However with the new changes in the new constitution, the board members will receive allowances.

How much the allowance is was not divulged by Faleomavaega because that has yet to be determined. 

Asked if the S.R.U. has the money to pay out the allowances and he said this is a necessary expense. 

 “If we want the S.R.U. to have professional board members, they should be given some sitting allowance.” 

Faleomavaega said the changes have been in the pipeline for the past 18 months. 

 “There has been a lot of consultation with the stakeholders and the affiliated unions and affiliated members to discuss a way forward."

 “The Chairperson shall hold office for a period of four years, while the directors will rotate a four-year cycle to assure continuity,” explained Faleomavaega. 

 “There is also a rotation system, which will commence in 2020. This will mean that three Board members must stand-down after only two years.” 

However they may be re-elected or reappointed and those board members are allowed to serve up to eight consecutive years in the same position. 

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