AWI on brink of collapse

29 Oct, 2008 01:26 PM
David Webster
David Webster

WA’S sole candidate for the forthcoming AWI board elections says the current level of dysfunction within the AWI leadership is unworkable.

Dudinin woolgrower David Webster said if the current board is re-elected, the Government may have to appoint an administrator, which would further compound problems the industry was facing.

“This split in the board stems from the decision to sign the out of court settlement with animal rights group PETA in regard to the 2010 mulesing deadline,” he said. “

The signing off of that agreement is the key issue behind the board split.

"The money spent on that court case and the agreement struck has put AWI in a precarious position.

“If that agreement is broken then all hell breaks loose and that is why the split in the board is irreconcilable.”

Mr Webster said growers needed to be fully informed in regard to decisions made by AWI.

“We are getting to the point where a shrinking number of growers will become responsible for any commitments that AWI has made contractually or otherwise,” he said.

“Growers cannot be misled about that position, they need to be informed about what is happening and has happened in the past.

“AWI is at such a low ebb now that it is in danger of falling over.”

Mr Webster said other candidates – such as Laurence Modiano, Meredith Sheil, Will Roberts and George Falkiner - were all practical people.

“I do not believe some of the existing candidates on the board would know where to stand in the sheep yards,” he said.

“They have no idea of the practical problems, for example mulesing, that woolgrowers face.

“The truth is that 90 per cent of Australian farmers will continue mulesing because at the moment that it is the best thing for the animal.

“Ensuring the future of the live export industry is another big concern for these candidates.”

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29/10/2008 10:03:39 AM

The sheep live in hope..
29/10/2008 5:58:21 PM

Fortuanately knowing where to stand in the sheepyards doesn't necessarily mean that you will make a suitable director of the woolgrower funded company AWI. Does David Webster believe that all AWI directors should have 2 sheep dogs and a ute? What AWI needs is a well balanced board with a skillset that will enhance woolgrowers investment and improve profitability in the future. I don't believe that AWGA endorsed candidates will have the necessary corporate governance skills to return a dividend for growers. Shareholders must vote for skills and governance first and sheep yard ability last vote for the Chairmans Ticket.
31/10/2008 7:03:29 AM

If you disagree with AWI you are branded an AWGA - it used to be a radical. Would it be assumed that if you agree you are a member of Woolproducers? Skill sets, who are Keniry, Boundy and Chubb anyway? Are they also Industry like the ones who made the decision on mulesing? The compulsory investment has not payed any dividend and the way things are going never will.


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