Ipoh Club upset with RoS for refusing to okay its revised constitution

The Royal Ipoh Club.

PETALING JAYA: The Royal Ipoh Club is unhappy with the Registrar of Societies (RoS) for refusing to approve its revised constitution that was passed by members last year.

Its president Thong Fah Chong said the RoS last week officially informed the club that the amendments to the constitution had been rejected but no reason was given.

“They also verbally told the club secretary that an appeal can be made within 30 days or to have a fresh extraordinary general meeting (EOGM),” he told FMT.

Thong asked on what ground they were expected to appeal if no reason had been given for the rejection.

“Also, the problem of retaining the same number of members who signed up to attend the meeting will arise if a fresh EOGM is to be held,” he said.

He said it would also cost another RM5,000 to hold a meeting.

“We will exhaust all avenues with the RoS first before deciding the next course of action,” he added.

The 124-year-old club held an EOGM in November to debate and approve the revised constitution prepared by its constitution and law review committee .

He said the quorum for the EOGM was 50 members but 90 registered before the meeting started.

“Clause 16 of the club constitution states that a resolution at an EOGM can be passed by two-thirds of voting members,” he said.

He said the amendments were submitted a week later but there was no response although the RoS pledged to give an answer within 21 days in accordance with its standard operating procedure.

Thong said he and several other members visited the RoS in early January but were told that 17 members had signed a petition to nullify the amendments.

“The RoS refused to reveal the nature of the complaint and only stated it was under investigation,” said Thong, a former MP for Ipoh Timor.

Thong said the club management again met the RoS late last month and this time they were told the amendments should have been passed by two-thirds of the members who registered to attend the EOGM and not two-thirds of the voting members.

The club’s constitution and law review committee chairman N Rajasegaran.

Meanwhile, constitution and law review committee chairman N Rajasegaran said past amendments to the constitution had been made by two-thirds of the voting members and not the registered members.

“Amendments on important matters concerning an increase in joining fee, increase in monthly subscriptions and right of membership transfer were previously approved by the RoS,” said Rajasegaran a former Industrial Court chairman.

Rajasegaran said if two-thirds of the registered members was the correct legal position, then all past amendments would become null and void.

He said interpretation of any word in the club constitution was to be determined by members at a general meeting and that their decision would be final.

“The RoS has no right to interpret the meaning of the term ‘voting member’,” he added.

Rajasegaran said more than two-thirds of the voting members had passed the resolution to adopt the revised constitution.

“At that time about 40 members were present in the hall,” he said.

Perak branch RoS director Norhasmaliana Ismail was not immediately available for a response as she is on leave for a week.

“Only the director can comment on the matter,” her deputy Jamaluddin Alus said.