Well it's after 5.00pm and according to the daily e-mail newsletter ”NEC nominations closed today at 5pm; there has been a huge increase in the number of candidates this year. Full details will be released once all of the nominations have been checked. There are 7 vacancies for the NEC this year.” So I don't know if I'm standing or not?
I did think an interesting scenario might develop if a nomination that was submitted on time was subsequently rejected! Let’s say someone has proposed two people or an assenter has signed 8 sets of papers. Under Parliamentary or Local Government rules that would mean who ever submitted last would be disqualified. Of course under those rules the candidate would still be able to get alternative signatures since nomination forms are checked as soon as they are submitted, not after the deadline has passed.
The whole nomination process has been a revelation to me. I was asked by Rob to be one of his assentors and I agreed. He e-mailed me the form; I signed it and e-mailed it back to him. Job done in less than an hour. Rob however has experience of the way UKIP run these sorts of procedures and asked the Returning Officer if an e-mailed copy of the form was acceptable. Unfortunately the answer was NO. Only original forms, signed in ink, were acceptable. WHY? I have agreed contracts worth £100,000’s using faxed paperwork. I have just stood guarantor for my daughter’s rent on her student flat next year and it was all done electronically. When I submitted my expenses return for the elections this year I sent it in electronically and the Election Office at Hartlepool Council had no problem accepting them!
UKIP really is still in the dark ages when it comes to modern technology. It is ludicrous in this day and age that pieces of paper need to cris/cross the country so that they can be signed in ink. It’s the same as not being allowed to campaign for the NEC seats. Why not?
If I am successful in being elected to the NEC then I will be looking for major changes to the way the NEC is elected and how it operates. I would like to see the NEC Elected at the Annual Party Conference, or if not elected at least NEC Candidates having a hustings session as part of the conference program. Let the membership meet the candidates, question the candidates and form an opinion, not be limited to 150 words and a small photograph.
UKIP needs to be in the 21st Century, procedures like this one are stuck in the 19th.
UKIP need a strategy and business plan. The NEC must listen to the membership and report back to them. I hope my plain speaking, northern voice can help shape a NEW NEC, to take on executive power, in a fully fledged party, inspiring and leading the fight to get Britain out of the EU.
If you haven't seen it yet don't forget to visit my Campaign Website at www.vote-steve.info