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Letters / OSCR intervention welcome

The Wir Shetland committee note with interest the intervention of the OSCR chief executive David Robb in the row about the Shetland Charitable Trust.

Of particular note is his statement that OSCR ”expect charity trustees, in the exercise of all or any of their duties, to take into account the views of their beneficiaries and the reputation of their charity”.

It is quite clear to the committee that the reputation of the charity is being harmed by the current controversy, and no matter what the trustees do with Shetland’s money in the future, a trust board that appoints its own members is inherently open to accusations of corruption and cronyism.

We applaud Mr Robb’s assertion that OSCR will take all relevant information into account and in that light would encourage everyone concerned to make ‘representations’ to OSCR as Mr Robb suggested.

We further note that the council will tomorrow (Friday) debate limiting the number of council appointees to two, thereby invalidating the trust’s current proposal for reorganisation.

If indeed that does happen, the SCT will not be in a position to implement their proposed changes and will have to think again.

We hope next time they take into account the wishes of the clear majority of Shetland residents and introduce real democracy to their own appointment process.

Peter Hamilton’s recent meeting with OSCR seems to indicate there is no reason the SCT board could not be wholly elected, so long as those elected are not also linked to the council.

We second Mr Hamilton’s call for the trustees to offer themselves for elections so that we can see if they pass muster.

James Titcomb
Temporary Chairman 
Wir Shetland

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General Election - 12 December 2019