Decision–Making Protocol for the EITI Pilot's Multi-Stakeholder Group

Principles

  1. Decision–Making Principles

    1. The MSG is committed to operating in the spirit of collaboration and cooperation with the aim of reaching general agreement amongst all members on all decisions.
    2. In cases when general agreement cannot be reached, a formal vote will be taken at the discretion of the Chair and voting rules will be applied. While consensus is not always possible, decision-making principles are designed to build the greatest possible consensus.
    3. All 21 MSG members will be represented in decision-making.
    4. Simple majority voting is the least desirable preference and will only occur as a last resort.
  2. Decision-making Rules

    1. Decision-making will occur by a three tiered hierarchical system as follows:
      • Consensus. The Chair will seek to achieve consensus for all decisions. If this is not achieved then modified consensus will be sought.
      • Modified Consensus. Consists of a two thirds or greater majority of exercised votes (i.e. minus abstentions) and includes a minimum of 2 representatives from each constituency. If this is not achieved, a working group will be formed comprising equal representation from each constituency, to discuss and negotiate a recommendation to proceed to the MSG. This may occur at the meeting; post meeting (with the intention to provide a recommendation by the next MSG meeting); or be considered out-of-session. Once the sub-group has provided its recommendation, the MSG will seek to make a decision on the basis of consensus or modified consensus.
      • Simple Majority. If modified consensus is still not achieved the motion will be passed by simple majority i.e. greater than 50 % in favour. Decisions made by simple majority will be identified in the minutes as such, with recognition that simple majority decision-making is the least-desirable and lowest grade of decision, reflecting substantial dissent by MSG members
    2. One vote will be recorded per member, and abstentions will be recorded.
    3. All 21 MSG members will be represented for each vote. The number of votes required to pass a motion will adjust according to any abstentions to maintain a two-thirds or simple majority of participating votes.
  3. Proxy Arrangements

    1. All 21 MSG members will be counted for each motion. Where a member is unable to be present at a meeting, that member will appoint another person to act as proxy at that meeting, and advise the EITI MSG Secretariat of the appointment in advance of the meeting.
    2. All proxy appointees will be required to sign confidentiality and conflict of interest forms where necessary.
    3. An MSG member may appoint any other person as their proxy for a specific meeting.
    4. No person may hold more than two proxy votes for MSG members at a time with the exception of the Chair
    5. In exceptional circumstances and at the Chair's discretion, when no advice on a proxy has been given and a member is absent from a meeting, the proxy will default to the Chair. The Chair may allocate the vote, abstain or use the vote as they see fit.
    6. Should the Chair hold a significant number of unallocated proxies they have the discretion to decide if votes are to be ratified out-of-session.
  4. Abstention

    1. Where a member intentionally abstains from a decision-making process, their vote will not be counted for or against the decision. Their vote will be discounted from the number of eligible votes.
    2. To ensure abstention by a member is intentional, a member will notify the Secretariat of this intention, where possible in advance, and ensure that the abstention is recorded in the minutes of the meeting, or the record of decision for an out-of-session purpose.
    3. Should the Chair determine that a significant number of abstentions are being exercised they have the discretion to decide if votes need to be ratified out-of-session.
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