Leaders February 2014

You Only Vote Twice

New constitution to be tabled at March EGM

You may remember that last year’s Executive Committee (Excom) elections were the most hotly contested in the British Chamber of Commerce in Japan’s history. Voter turnout set new records for member engagement. It was also very instructive.

When the dust had settled, we recognised the need to create a more robust set of rules and procedures for contested elections, designed to strengthen democracy, openness, accountability and efficiency as the BCCJ continues to expand.

This led to the appointment of an Excom task force to review possible changes to our constitution.

Excom has now approved the task force’s recommendations, which will be presented before you, our members, at an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) on Wednesday, 5 March.

The key constitutional changes can be found on the BCCJ website (www.bccjapan.com).

Once approved, the revised constitution will govern this year’s Excom elections, set to take place throughout the month of April, with results announced at the Annual General Meeting on 23 April.

Members can access a marked-up copy of the revised constitution on the chamber’s website. For further information or clarification, please contact the chamber secretariat through Executive Director Lori Henderson:

So yes, we’re asking members to vote twice this year, first to enhance the governance of the chamber, and second to elect the next Excom under a new set of rules.

Both votes mark critical opportunities to make your voice heard. I urge you to take advantage, and I look forward to setting new records of member engagement.

Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the taskforce composed of Ray Bremner OBE, Reiko Sakimura and Jim Weeks for all their hard work and important contributions to moving the chamber forward.

Thank you for your ongoing support, and I hope to see you all at one of our upcoming events.