UKIP Uncovered
What motivates the leaders of the United Kingdom Independence Party?

Saturday, July 12, 2003 

The Party Treasurer's Inquiry

It would appear that we are not alone in wondering what is happening to the report of the inquiry that found ballot winning MEP North East candidate Peter Troy guilty of submitting false membership applications and paying for their subscriptions.

An ordinary member raised the matter with Mr de Roeck earlier this week asking:-

"Subject: Re: McTROY
Hi John,

Ive been watching the web and the antics of the above playing childish jokes on whether he has resigned or not.
I have read your report on him which I assume is true .

There has been trouble up north ! And people have been disciplined. So John, how come he is still in the party as well as being a candidate for Scotland.........

To which he received the following reply"-

"From: John de Roeck
Sent: Thursday, July 10, 2003 12:34 PM
Hi ...,

My report is certainly true. No one is disputing any of the contents. Incidentally I value truth above political expediency, which does not lead to my popularity.

It is up to the Party Secretary, Returning Officer or NEC to decide on any further course of action.

I recommend you direct your enquires to the Party Secretary, Derek Clark, about the Scottish Election and other matters, as these are outside my area of responsibility.

Kind regards,
John de Roeck

Some of the conclusions of the report referred to were quoted in The Northern Echo the daily morning newspaper published in Darlington. The link to the archived article is still not available, and the link we provided on the date of publication 3rd July expired the following day. In view of the interest generated by that article and the number of requests received for a reference, we repeat it here in full:-

Officials ousted in party wrangle

by Chris LLoyd

THE North East branch of the United Kingdom Independence Party was in disarray this week following the disciplining of three of its leading officers.

The latest twist in a bitter internal war comes after the resignation of three candidates who had hoped to be standing in the region in next year's European elections.

At the heart of the turmoil is an investigation into apparent membership irregularities in the North-East branch.

The three officials who have been banned from holding office for 18 months are Michael Rollings of Ponteland, Northumberland, the chairman of the committee overseeing next year's European election campaign; Martin Rouse of Burnopfield, the committee treasurer; and Judith Wallace of Whitley Bay, the secretary.

Mr Rollings said: " The discipline has been carried out in an unconstitutional manner and on a false premise."

The disarray within the North-East comes at a terrible time for Euro-sceptics because they would be expected to oppose regional government, which is seen as part of a hidden European agenda, and the new EU constitution.

The turmoil stems from 60 new members joining the branch since January, many of them recruited by Sedgefield branch chairman Peter Troy, who was hoping to be elected as one of the party's candidates in the 2004 Euro elections.

As the Northern Echo reported in March, one of those who received a membership card card was British National Party activist Trevor Agnew of Darlington. Mr Agnew, an unsuccessful BNP candidate in the May local elections in Darlington, had been expelled from Ukip in 1999 because of his links with the extremist BNP.

He said he was not aware that he had applied to rejoin Ukip until a membership card had arrived in the post "out of the blue".

Martin Cole a businessman living in Switzerland who was with Mr Troy on the Euro-shortlist, demanded an investigation into Mr Agnew's membership and then resigned his candidature.

William Chrystal, a farmer from Wingate, also withdrew from the shortlist.

The North-East election committee which included Mr Rollings, Mr Rouse and Mrs Wallace, who supported Mr Cole's calls for an investigation, was then suspended following a procedural complaint from Mr Troy.

An investigation by Ukip's national treasurer, John de Roeck, began as the 230 North-East members voted to choose their four candidates from the five names on the shortened shortlist.

The ballot closed on May14, but the results were not announced to May19, due to a recount.

Mr Troy won by a slim majority, but immediately announced his withdrawal in the interests of "party unity".

On May 30, Mr de Roeck finished his investigation and concluded: "Several new members have received membership without making payment themselves to the party. Of these new members, some had no knowledge they were to receive membership, and of these new members, some were paid for by Mr Troy directly while others have not been paid for at all."

Mr de Roeck concluded that Mr Troy had paid Mr Agnew's membership fees.

Mr Troy told The Northern Echo: "I have recruited lots of people to the party and make no apologies for doing so. I have recruited 60 people and have received only four complaints from people who have fallen out with me."

He said he was now hoping to become a Ukip candidate in Scotland.

Mr Rollings said: "It is astonishing that he should still be in the party let alone a candidate in Scotland."

The article ends with that statement, which as can be seen from the exchanges at the beginning of this post, continues to hang in the air.

As Mr de Roeck says in his e-mail; questions on this situation should be addressed to the Party Secretary Derek Clark, the Returning Officer Michael Harvey or members of UKIP's NEC.

posted by Martin |8:16 AM
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