The Mayo GAA executive are facing pressure from Croke Park and their clubs following their non-attendance at last Saturday’s Special Congress in Páirc Uí Chaoimh.
The lack of Mayo board presence in Cork has alarmed both national GAA officials and their own units. It is not certain if the county may or can be punished for their absence but the decision not to travel to Cork, especially when international units made the trip, has disappointed those who organised the event.
Club delegates are expected to grill senior board officers at next week’s monthly meeting. There has been widespread shock in Mayo GAA circles since it emerged that no representative of the county board attended to cast votes on any of the crucial motions discussed, including the proposal that a Tier Two competition be introduced into the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship - a motion which was passed overwhelmingly.
Mayo GAA PRO Paul Cunnane has confirmed that no officer of the county board had been present at the GAA summit. “Nobody from the board could attend due to some personal circumstances affecting some of the officers who were due to travel on Mayo GAA’s behalf,” he said.
Plus, both the county senior and intermediate football championship finals were taking place in Castlebar on Saturday evening. They are two of our biggest games in the calendar each season and also required certain officers to be present at MacHale Park.
As it was Special Congress, Mayo would only have required three delegates to be in attendance excluding their Central Council representative.
Club delegates to the Mayo GAA Board had been due to discuss the Special Congress motions at a County Board meeting last Wednesday evening, October 16, and “give direction to Mayo GAA delegates in relation to voting on motions”.
However, this board meeting was postponed so all Mayo GAA clubs were contacted via email last Monday, October 14 by County Board secretary, Dermot Butler, who said he was “inviting clubs/delegates to submit their recommendations as to how Mayo delegates should vote at Congress”. These recommendations were due to reach the county secretary by 6pm on Thursday last.
Meanwhile, the much-anticipated county board meeting which had been originally fixed for last week — where Mayo GAA chiefs were due to address claims made by the Mayo GAA International Supporters’ Foundation last month — has been postponed for the second time.
The meeting had been postponed initially until this Wednesday, October 23 but last Thursday an email from Mayo GAA secretary, Dermot Butler, was circulated to all clubs informing them that the meeting was being postponed until next Wednesday, October 30.
“The meeting is postponed as the chairman and secretary are unavailable to attend any meetings next week,” read the short note.
Next Wednesday will be exactly five weeks since the county board meeting where club delegates initially discussed the correspondence from the Mayo GAA International Supporters’ Foundation, in relation to their decision to “cease funding to Mayo County Board until appropriate governance structures are put in place”.