Wales board sees off vote of no confidence
June 15, 2014
Welsh rugby has thrown its collective weight behind the WRU © Getty Images
The Welsh Rugby Union comfortably saw off a vote of no confidence at the extraordinary general meeting in Port Talbot on Sunday.
The two resolutions voted on were that the WRU board of directors had not been acting in the best interests of Welsh rugby, while a second had called for a vote of no confidence in the current board. Both saw the club representatives throw their collective weight behind the WRU.
Only four club representatives voted for the no-confidence resolution, with 462 opposing it and 18 abstaining. The first resolution failed to pass when 94% of the delegates voted by 453 votes in favour of the WRU. There were only 18 against, and 13 abstentions.
A total of 39 WRU member clubs and Wales' four professional regions had supported calls for an EGM - the WRU's first since 2007 - with the protest driven by former WRU chief executive David Moffett. Moffett gained sufficient backing for the meeting to be called, but it ended after almost four hours of debate in a crushing defeat for him and his supporters.
WRU chairman David Pickering said: "Today there has been an overwhelming vote of confidence in the Welsh Rugby Union. The clubs of Welsh rugby have exercised their constitutional right to question the governing body, and we have taken part in a full and frank debate.
"Welsh rugby is continuing to evolve, and now we must work together to make sure we build on our successes of the past and face up to our challenges of the future." And WRU group chief executive Roger Lewis added: "The incredible support shown for the WRU gives us the confidence to go forward with energy and focus to continue to evolve the game in Wales.
"The discussion in the meeting covered a range of issues, and we will ensure that we will engage fully with our clubs to find the right solutions. We now want to focus on the business of running Welsh rugby as both the professional and amateur levels of the game continue to evolve.
"We have all learnt lessons from this debate, and we will ensure the dialogue we have engaged in today continues to help us develop and improve."
Moffett was quiet after the result, using Twitter to thank his supporters and helpers rather than to lambaste the board as is usually the case. "Thank you to everyone for the last five months," he posted. "It's been a helluva ride. Democracy is what it is I wish all of Welsh rugby the very best."
The WRU has agreed to hold a ballot of all clubs to reach an agreement on whether a proposed new national league structure of the amateur game will go ahead, or whether the existing structure will be retained for next season.
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