GAA rejects Congress transparency motion

Liam Griffin. Photo: Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

By John Fogarty

GAA Congress this afternoon rejected the Club Players Association (CPA) motion for voter transparency at the annual event.

Proposed by CPA executive member Liam Griffin through his club St Mary’s, Rosslare at Wexford’s annual convention last year, the 1996 All-Ireland SHC winning manager appealed to delegates that there was nothing to be afraid of in backing the motion.

The CPA had called on every delegate’s vote being recorded “and the result of each vote shall be announced and the record of how each delegate voted shall be displayed at Congress and published in the minutes thereafter”.

However, Griffin's call fell on deaf ears as only 17% of delegates supported it following vocal opposition from Cork chairperson Tracey Kennedy and European board chairman Tony Bass.

Echoing what was stated by executive members at Cork’s meeting last week, Kennedy said she found the motion “disturbing” as she claimed it suggested distrust and something fundamentally wrong at the heart of the Association".

Bass dismissed the proposal as “a Trojan horse”, questioned the need for the CPA and claimed it would lead to witch-hunts.

Although the GPA’s Seamus Hickey stood up to lend support to the motion, Griffin was left to defend the proposal, hitting back at Bass and insisting there were “no Trojan horses” but the GAA would be in danger of creating one if they didn’t back it. He also said he was "appalled" Bass would consider witch-hunts might be a by-product of an initiative aimed at ensuring honesty.

Meanwhile, GAA clubs outside Ireland will now be able to make their property available to other sports following a successful motion by the Britain County Board. Although Cork secretary Frank Murphy opposed it saying it was unnecessary and dangerous, there were several speakers in favour of it including Ned Quinn while British chairman Seán Hackett rejected Murphy’s claim that it was not required, and it received 90% support.

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