Tribunal denies accreditation to Ontario farm organizations

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‘It’s business as usual’ says president of Ontario Federation of Agriculture, the province’s largest group


Miss.Slater, seems to think the NFU was denined based on a few technical issues, what planet is this woman on ??? any one wanting to read the tribunials report can go to the OMAFRA Tribunal web page and click on the tab for decisions. My self and 3 other directors resigned last year beacuse we knew the NFU was not meeting the creteria under the ACT and yet they didnt care, we even hired a lawyer, to give his professional opinion, still they didnt care, we tried several times to get the other board members to see that they were not following the ACT and meeting their obligations as a director under the ACT, but several long time NFU board members didnt care they felt they were above the law, bitter sweet victory to see the tribunal was intelligent enough to also see the cover up that had been pulled off by the NFU-O and the NFU for several years.

All of this could have been so easily avoided had only a few top ranking NFU directors just agreed to correct the problems, but becuase of their ego's they are now today no longer an accredited GFO.

Sean McGivern
Former Past President NFU-O
Current President of the Practical Farmers of Ontario

And neither is the CFFO or the OFA??
This doesn't make sense.

If I understand the matter correctly, all three organizations were declined for basically the same technical reasons - however, the NFU was the only one of the three singled out for additional criticism about structural issues - ie the autonomy (or lack thereof) from the national organization, as well as accounting procedures which weren't compliant with CICA guidelines. In other words, while the OFA and the CFFO both have a relatively short trip to get re-accredited (dotting I's and crossing T's) the NFU has a long way to go because the accreditation panel has effectively said the NFU not only has to dot their I's and cross their T's, but the NFU also has to be able to show the panel they actually know which letter is which - something the panel seems to believe the NFU is unable to do now.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton, ON

If he did he would find it was the OFA not someone from the NFU who mentioned technical issues.

anonymous comment modified by editor

Perhaps, instead of being so-eager to chastise Mr. McGivern, you had taken the time to read the article, you would have noticed, right near the top of the article, - "Spokespeople for the Ontario Federation of Agriculture, the Christian Farmers Federation of Ontario and the National Farmers Union - Ontario, say technical issues are behind the decisions, which stem from hearings held nearly a year ago". It appears, therefore, that all three GFOs are taking the position that technical issues are to blame for the tribunal's decision - and, of course, what else would they say?

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

That the NFU does not have accounting procedures consistent with those outlined in the CICA Handbook, is a most serious matter, and raises any number of concerns about the NFU's level of due diligence, and responsibility to its members, and to the government which grants GFO certification. This lack of proper accounting procedures is not a technical matter, but a major omission which speaks volumes about the basic capability of the NFU.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

With out the funds from the Ontario FBR program, it will be interesting to see how the western branch of the NFU will run its operations in SASK... hope fully now money paid by ontario farmers can be spent in ontario to work for ontario farmers...

It really would be interesting to see just how much money collected by the FBR program in Ontario since 1993, has been used by the Saskatchewan-based head office of the NFU to defend the Canadian Wheat Board, an entity without any jurisdiction in Ontario at all. But then again, both the CFFO and the OFA fall all over themselves to spend/waste money defending supply management, a program which does little except pit OFA and CFFO members against one-another.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

Darn. I was hoping we could get rid of mandatory farm organization membership altogether. Why do I need to belong to any of the organizations. They do not represent me and only use accreditation to enrich their own groups and pet causes. It is just another form of government and another tax.

Election procedural irregularities are not unique to the NFU. Nowhere that I am aware of is there a consolation prize for the looser of president except at the OFA. If you are a failure on the first day of balloting you simply slide down the greased brass ballot pole and run for a vice position. The point is you failed and they don't want you.
How is new thought, direction, or representation introduced in this incestuousness manner?
It would be nice if the tribunal saw fit to examine why this election process is so different than elections in the real world. Although not an NFU member I salute Mr McGivern for taking an ethical stand.

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