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Ross Manuel clarifies issues

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By Alice Gregorio-Nicolas

Newly-elected Philippine Fiesta of Victoria Inc (PFVI)Chairperson Ross Manuel has answered some issues raised by the Concerned Members of the Philippine Fiesta of Victoria. The Committee is being criticised for not holding a public consultation in relation to the $1.1M sale of Lot 1 of the Laverton property. Manuel quoted Section 20 of the PFVI Constitution, Item 2, letter C, “The Committee may, subject to these rules and regulations and the Act, exercise all such powers and functions as may be exercised by the Association other than those powers and functions that are required by these rules to be exercised by general meetings of the members of the Association” to indicate it followed proper procedure. He said in 2009 the inception of building a Community Centre started. On 17 October 2010, there was a presentation of the concept, selling a portion of the land to build a Community Centre which was accepted and approved by the membership during the PFVI Quarterly meeting.

No execom to respond to concerns
The Concerned Members of PFVI has expressed disappointment that the Management Committee did not meet with them for the group’s request for a Special Meeting on 12 May 2012 at the Philippine Community Centre. The request was communicated to the Committee for nearly a month only to be told that it can meet with them on 8 July 2012 during the quarterly Annual General Meeting. “There’s no miscommunication, only time constraint. We don’t have an Executive Committee to respond to their concerns as the Election only happened last 6 May 2012,” Manuel said.

Manuel told The Philippine Times that the Management Committee is willing to show to the public for scrutiny and review the externally-audited Financial Statements from 2003 to present. The Committee is also open to show all the documents of the $1.1M sale, including the Contract of Sale.

When asked if the Committee can be more transparent when it comes to major decisions affecting the membership, he simply said “Yes” and did not elaborate.

Group’s decision
As to the comment that he is holding on to his position for so long being Chairperson for seven years now, Manuel said “it’s the group’s decision” why he was re-elected. He clarified the critical vote between him and Liz Honey for the position of Chairmanship saying the actual numbers are 9 in favour of him and 5 in favour of Liz Honey. There were 14 candidates who elected the Management Committee, out of 16 members. The two, Roy Carbungco and Remy Raquel did not participate during the final election due to their “unofficial” resignation.

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