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election controversy? - Re: Handover to new PDWG co-chairs [AfriNIC-rpd]

Walubengo J jwalu at
Fri Jun 17 08:44:56 UTC 2011


Initially, I also thought it was "much ado about nothing" given the fact of 2 candidates, 2 positions, one of which already requested by one the candidates.  So why go through the empty motions of voting(by acclamation, secret ballot, show of hands or whatever)  when the outcome is obvious?

One member of the community told me the problem lies not in the recently held PDWG elections. But in future elections where a precedent set today maybe used (abused?) in future elections. E.g  NomComm may present candidates and declare results immediately - even where prevailing circumstances dont exactly justify - after all the community will already have been "conditioned" to such a procedure and may fail to detect anything...

I liked what Krishna did last year in Joburg when we I think we had only one candidate for the ASO rep; he still went through the (empty?) motions and this had the effect of "community participation" even though the outcome was obvious. Maybe something the Board will need to document since there's nothing explicitly written on what to do when technically there's "no competition" given that current rules presumed and provided for what to do when there is competition(many candidates)... 


--- On Thu, 6/16/11, Owen DeLong <owen at> wrote:

From: Owen DeLong <owen at>
Subject: Re: election controversy? - Re: Handover to new PDWG co-chairs [AfriNIC-rpd]
To: "Kris Seeburn" <kseeburn at>
Cc: "sm+afrinic at" <sm+afrinic at>, "rpd at" <rpd at>
Date: Thursday, June 16, 2011, 10:25 PM

I wasn't there, either, but, this sounds like "Much ado about nothing" to me.

It seems that the NomCom saw that there were 2 candidates. That one of two
candidates had declared himself as running strictly for the 1-year term.

Since there is no "none-of-the-above" or write-in (as I understand it) in such
an election, what purpose would have been served by the time and trouble
of conducting an election?

While I agree that a democratic process is important, in a situation where you
have only 2 eligible candidates for two electable positions and one of the
candidates has self-selected for the shorter term, it seems to me that any
election beyond that would be purely theatrical and not democratic in nature.

As I understand it, the following is not in dispute:

    +    The PDPWG co-chairs were properly nominated
    +    One of the co-chairs stood for election only to the shorter term
    +    There was no possible different outcome from an election under
        the circumstances

It seems to me that the only dispute arises from the fact that the NomCom,
recognizing these facts chose to skip the theatrical election and deliver the
(obvious) result without the pomp and circumstance.

Personally, I think the community has better uses of their time pursuing real
issues such as IPv6 deployment or the fact that only 2 candidates stood for
election rather than getting wrapped around the axel about a shortcut to the
process which was inconsequential in nature and would not have been taken
were there any chance of a different outcome.


On Jun 15, 2011, at 2:23 PM, Kris Seeburn wrote:

> general question here is that : Are we talking about "vice de procedures" or in english "procedural error" ? Sorry people i was not at the elections but am trying to undedstand. 
> Perhaps "ashok" can give his legal opinion on this situation despite the fact that the election has been done. Although from what i am understanding....a general question arise : are we questioning the election of the two candidates or are we questioning the mandate that was allotted to the two persons?
> Kris Seeburn
> On Jun 15, 2011, at 11:05 PM, sm+afrinic at wrote:
>> At 07:57 AM 6/15/2011, gift wrote:
>>> Nomcom is not sure how the issue of the election has come up during the hand over process.
>> Dr Paulos asked about the legitimacy of the PDWG Co-chairs.  I congratulated
>> Dr Paulos B Nyirenda and Tim McGinnis on their election previously ( ).  I have also mentioned that I do not have any issue with the appointment of the two new PDWG co-chairs ( ).
>>> However, since this issue has been brought up publicly, in the spirit of transparency, we will endeavor to comment so that the record is placed straight and also to give an official version of what transpired to the incoming PDWG Co Chairs and other members who were not at AfriNIC 14. There are no legitimacy issues arising from the election as a
>> As Tim McGinnis was participating remotely, he probably knows what happened during the PDWG election part of the open public policy meeting.  Trevor Mwangi raised an interesting point about remote participants registering their protest ( ).
>>> final poll was carried without any dissension. It is also incorrect for S. Moonesamy to suggest that members were denied their voice at the meeting:
>>> "I hope that any future NomCom will respond to community
>>> feedback instead of ignoring objections from the floor."
>> The quoted text does not include any suggestion that "members were denied their voice at the meeting".
>>> concerned there are no outstanding issues relating to the concluded PDWG Co Chair elections as was witnessed during the meeting hence the formal announcement by the ACEO. The job of Nomcom is to work with the membership to deliver a democratic election and in the process to deal with any arising challenges. In the end a member's verdict was delivered. We should also accept that what transpired at the elections is a learning opportunity to further deepen the community's democratic and corporate governance systems. Nomcom will accordingly be making the necessary recommendations in its report on the elections.
>> There isn't any "membership" for the PDWG.  "It is expected that the NomCom will oversee all open elections conducted by AfriNIC during a given year, namely Board Seats, Policy Working Group Chairs and NRO-NC representatives".  "A democratic election" is not about displaying the list of candidates on a slide and announcing the results within a few seconds on the next slide ( ).  Fortunately, participants came to the microphone and objected to that.
>> I don't think that the community has a need for a "democratic and corporate governance system".  If Frank and Andrew can agree on whether questions are constructive ( ), Sunday Folayan can walk to the microphone and have his objections taken into account, Graham Beneke and Trevor Mwangi can ask questions without being present at the meeting, J. Walubengo and Mark Elkins can come to the microphone like any other participant, it is left to the community to appreciate whether it is an open and fair process where people can discuss and reach consensus.
>> It is up to the community to determine whether the message posted at written by Gift Shava, Arbogast Fabian and Hago Dafalla is a fair representation of the events.
>> Regards,
>> S. Moonesamy 
>> _______________________________________________
>> rpd mailing list
>> rpd at
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> rpd mailing list
> rpd at

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