Unite/Amicus General Secretary Election Starts
From the Amicus/Unite website. The back story to this is that SWP supporter Jerry Hicks (Convenor at Rolls-Royce Filton) has used the same rule Derek Simpson used to force Sir Ken Jackson to face re-election to force Derek to face a new election.
It will be interesting to see if other political traditions in the union field a third candidate or if it ends up being a straight fight between the Labour left and the Trots:
"Unite to hold election for Joint General Secretary
9 October 2008
The Executive Council of Unite has today (Thursday) called an election in the Amicus section of the union and has postponed the full integration of the union until May 1st, 2009.
The election has been agreed in order to safeguard the provision, as set out in the general rules and instrument of amalgamation of Unite, for the continuation of the General Secretary of the Amicus section in office as a Unite Joint General secretary until December 2010.
Unite members have voted overwhelming in favour of this provision in two previous secret ballots. However, the Executive Council has taken this course of action in light of the potential success of a legal challenge to these arrangements brought against the union by a single member. It is the view of the Executive that an election now will ensure that the members’ desire to safeguard the agreed rules of Unite is respected.
To enable the election process of the Amicus section General Secretary and to allow further time to ensure the full integration of Unite, the Executive Council has delayed the implementation of the Full Rules of the union until May 1st, 2009. The rules were otherwise due to be implemented from November 1st, 2008.
The election in the Amicus section will be concluded on March 9th, 2009, with the winner holding office for a year, from December 2009 to December 2010.
UPDATE: The Times says TGWU may quit Unite, and that Laurence Faircloth, Amicus SW Regional Secretary, is third, pro-merger candidate vs. Simpson and Hicks.