Doing anything on 21 Feb?

At 12:30, on 21 February, I guess most of you will be doing something useful, like seeing patients. But having the luxury of retirement and not having any urgent cruise or holiday to attend, I could well find my way to the British Dental Association (BDA) in London. What draws me there will be the excitement of an extraordinary general meeting (EGM), where the articles of association may be amended.

Now such meetings are rare at the BDA and were usually tagged on to another meeting of the Representative Body. Like this they often sought to amend the articles or by-laws of the association and were over in five minutes flat before we all decamped to lunch. This time it could be different and might produce something newsworthy if nothing else.

Under the rules, an EGM can only discuss one resolution. The one in February is not to discuss the debacle of the new membership scheme and resultant staff redundancies. This one is written in legalese, of course, but will give the Principal Executive Committee (PEC) the power to remove its chair, deputy chair and chair of the Education, Ethics and the Dental Team Working Group.

So that wasn’t possible already? you and I might think. Why this sudden rush? The truth, several of my contacts have told me is that the PEC wants to be rid of its chair. Is he taking the rap for the three-tiered membership? No I am told not that, what then?

I have heard again from several sources that the elected head of PEC has been accused of having an extra-marital relationship. Assignations are alleged to have taken place on BDA premises and the injured husband subsequently wrote to all members of the PEC demanding they remove their chair for unprofessional conduct among other things.

I am also told that the PEC convened a meeting without their chair and agreed he should go. However the BDA lawyer advised that he would be entitled to compensation. The amounts I have heard he could be paid are pretty eye-watering. They would not be popular with members already displeased with seeing some well-respected and hard-working BDA staff made redundant.

But the chairman could make a great scapegoat for this beleaguered organisation. Hence the EGM, which will allow the PEC to remove its chair presumably without compensation; should be an interesting day out in London for me to say the least.

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