This document serves to assist DA Abroad National Organising Committees (NOCs) to organise their Annual General Meetings (AGMs).
The DA Abroad Executive Committee reserve the right to amend the National Organising Committee AGM and Elections Procedure at any time, however will endeavour to inform all members of any changes as soon as possible.
1. The AGM
The purpose of the AGM is to:
- Receive and endorse the NOC’s Annual Report and Financial Report;
- Announce the results of the NOC’s elections which must be conducted prior to the AGM;
- Consider motions for the NOC;
- Receive a presentation/speech from a Guest Speaker (optional).
All AGM’s need to adhere to the DA Federal Constitution and the DA Abroad Rules.
2. The Annual Report
The Annual Report is a written record of the branch’s activities for the year. The Annual Report should cover issues such as
– Chair and Secretary’s reports;
– Recruitment, Organisation and Membership Figures;
– Any reports from sub-committees;
– Any other relevant NOC issues;
– Campaign reports.
3. DA Abroad Financial Report
The NOC to present the preceding year’s DA Abroad Financial Report as provided by the Global Finance Chairperson
4. Candidate Nominations & Elections
The following positions shall be elected ahead of the AGM:
– Deputy Chairperson
– Ordinary Committee Members
Any member of the DA Abroad who is a member of that country where the AGM for the NOC may nominate themselves to stand for any of the positions of that country’s NOC.
The NOC may also decide to create other portfolio positions and elect individual members who have nominated themselves as candidates for these positions.
All nominations must be submitted via the official form in advance of the advertised deadline for submission and verified to be in order by the current NOC. Where there is no current NOC in place, these need to be submitted to the DA Abroad Executive Committee who will then be responsible for vetting such nomination form.
The details (timetables and voting procedures) for NOC elections must be sent to all NOC members who should be given an opportunity to formally approve the arrangements and timetable. It is important that the elections must be substantially free and fair towards all candidates.
Voting will be by online ballot. The electable positions in accordance with the DA Abroad Regulations will be elected through a process as stipulated by the DA’s voting system. Names will appear on the ballot paper in random order determined by drawing the first name from a hat, and then the remaining candidates listed in alphabetical order after that. The outcome of these elections will be announced at the AGM.
If only one eligible nomination has been submitted for any position, such a nominee will automatically be deemed to be elected to the position for which such nomination has been submitted. If no nominations have been received for an electable position, the NOC may elect a person to fill such vacant position.
These elections will be overseen by the Presiding Officer – a person independent of the DA Abroad who is also a member of the DA and familiar with its regulations.
The nominated candidates will be approved on the following criteria:
– The nominee must be a paid member of the DA Abroad
– The nominee must intend to reside in the country of which they are intending to be a Country Representative of, for more than 1 year
– The nominee must indicate a commitment to the DA’s vision of One Nation with One Future underpinned by Freedom, Fairness and Opportunity for All
– The nominee must acknowledge that they will abide by the DA’s Constitution, the DA Abroad Rules and the DA’s anti-racism pledge
Arrangements need to be made to ensure that all individual members get a reasonable opportunity to vote that is not dependant on attending a meeting and may only vote once.
Ordinary Committee Members may make themselves available to serve on the NOC (subject to eligibility) and may be elected by the NOC at the AGM. The newly elected NOC may decide to have any number of ordinary Committee Members, however the NOC will be limited to a maximum of fifteen (15) members. In the event that more than 15 members make themselves available to be elected to the NOC, then they must be elected by the membership of that country
The elected and appointed NOC members shall be established for one year until the start of the next AGM.
NOCs are encouraged to debate motions:
– Dealing with NOC issues (to be taken forward by the incoming NOC)
– On DA Abroad issues to submit to the DA Abroad Executive Committee (and to be taken forward by the DAAEC)
Motions for the AGM must be submitted via the official form in advance of the advertised deadline for submission.
6. Encouraging Members to Attend
All DA Abroad members residing in a country at the time of the AGM are allowed to attend the AGM, however only those members who had joined as members before the date of the membership audit will be allowed to vote in the NOC election.
Do ensure that the event is well publicised and that invitations are sent out to all members via email in advance of the AGM, and that reminders of the date, venue and importance of the AGM are sent out.
Consider providing refreshments before the meeting and/or holding a social afterwards.
Ensure the venue is a central location that is easily accessible by public transport and provide directions for people to get there.
7. Timetable and Actions
5 Weeks before the AGM
- Set a date for the AGM – try to determine a date when the majority of members can attend. Consider for example holding it on a weekday evening or Saturday
- Book the venue for the meeting
- If you decide to have a guest speaker, confirm their availability in advance
- Confirm the timings of the election and publish the dates of the election, giving notice of the date when nominations will be opened
4 Weeks before the AGM
- Notice of the AGM should be sent out to members calling for nominations and motions. Be sure to also include details of the AGM and elections on the DA Abroad website and social media channels.
- Include links to the online Candidate Nomination Form and the Motion Form. This will be supplied to by the election co-ordinator.
- Write your Branch Annual Report – it does not need to be to lengthy, but can simply be a brief record. Invite existing NOC members to contribute.
- The Annual Financial reports should be finalised and circulated.
3 Week before the AGM
- Closing date for motions and nominations.
- Once nominations have been closed, all election candidates need to be vetted and 5 days needs to be allowed for this process.
2 Weeks before the AGM
- Allow for one week of election canvassing.
- Ensure rules for canvassing are distributed to all election candidates
1 Week before the AGM
- Conduct the election for any contested NOC posts. Distribute the link to the online voting ballot. This will be supplied by the election co-ordinator.
- Issue the agenda with the minutes from the last AGM if available. Also include any details of motions that have been submitted.
- Remind all members of the details of the upcoming AGM and the importance of attending.
2 Days before the AGM
Closing time for all elections conducted online must be at 23:59, 2 days before the AGM. This should allow for sufficient time for the results of the election to be determined and ratified.
At the AGM
- The outgoing NOC Chairperson should chair the meeting which should be conducted in as relaxed and friendly an atmosphere as possible with members encouraged to take an active part in any discussion
- The Annual Report should be presented and members should be asked to formally endorse the Annual Report.
- The financial report should be made available.
- The meeting chair should formally announce the outcomes of the elections.
- The AGM will break for a brief intermission.
- The AGM should reconvene to and the newly elected NOC Chairperson must put all duly accepted motions to a vote.
- The NOC Chairperson will conclude the AGM
After the AGM
- Send details of the newly election NOC to the DA Abroad Executive Committee. All new NOC members will be added to the DA Abroad website and so you will need to include a professional profile photo of each member and a brief biography of each member of no more than 300 words to be published on the website. 1. The appointed Country Representatives’ details will be published on the DA Abroad website 48hrs after the candidate has been notified of their selection
- Minutes of the AGM, including all accepted motions must be distributed to all country members.
- At the first meeting of the new NOC you should appoint members of the committee to cover various roles and responsibilities. A precise list may depend on the requirements and composition of your NOC. The following are suggestions for consideration:
- Membership & Volunteers Officer
- Communications Officer
- Social Media Officer
- Network Development Officer
- Make arrangements to produce a strategy and plan for the coming year to be shared with the DA Abroad Executive Committee.