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Clubs call for vote of no confidence in National League Board

Two non-league clubs have taken the remarkable step of calling for a National League extraordinary general meeting (EGM) and a vote of no confidence in the chairman and the board.

Maidstone United and Dorking Wanderers, both of the National League South, claim that the league’s management of the COVID crisis has led to “widespread anger and ridicule”.

Their letter to clubs lists what it calls examples of “questionable governance”, the most recent of which was the announcement of the decision to fine 17 clubs over failure to fulfil fixtures. Clubs had put games on hold pending the result of a vote to call an end to the season in February.

They say: “While it is not the perfect solution, we feel that [calling the EGM] to have a debate on the management of the NL Board is a necessary first step along the road to better governance at our levels of the pyramid structure.

“As a result of these and other failings we believe matters have gone too far and the decision-makers must be held to account. We wish to call an EGM urgently and submit a single resolution: The meeting has no confidence in the Chairman and the Board.

“If the motion is passed it will oblige resignations and new elections will have to be held. A new era of governance will be possible and clubs’ voices will be heard… It will not be the end of reform but the beginning.”

Former board member Caroline Barker, who resigned in May 2020, had previously called for the establishment of working party to address the issues raised by the pandemic.

The call for the EGM is the latest act in a tumultuous season in the National League, which has included clubs falling out with the league over ‘unfair and unjustified’ distribution of vital lottery grant funding. A row over the requirement of clubs to take out loans to complete the season, having been promised further grant funding by the National League, ultimately led to clubs at Step 2 voting to curtail the season.

Clubs have until Wednesday 31st March to indicate their support for the EGM, with the meeting likely to take place in early April if it gains the required level of support from member clubs.

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