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“It suddenly struck me that that tiny pea, pretty and blue, was the Earth. I put up my thumb and shut one eye, and my thumb blotted out the planet Earth. I didn't feel like a giant. I felt very, very small.” – Neil Armstrong (1930-2012)

Fresh Reads from the Science 'o sphere!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Update: Spy vs. Spy

Yet another news release on the AWARE Exco takeover saga, this time with two bizarre twists (highlighted in bold):

AWARE president questions intentions of veterans unhappy over election outcome

By Cheryl Lim/Pearl Forss, Channel NewsAsia
Posted: 17 April 2009 1747 hrs

SINGAPORE: The new president of the Association of Women for Action and Research (AWARE), Josie Lau, has questioned the intentions of veteran members who are unhappy that newcomers have swept most of the executive committee (Exco) seats in the organisation's recent annual election.

In a statement to the media, she challenged these members to disclose their motives and objectives fully and honestly.

On Tuesday, 160 members had written to the new Exco to request for an extraordinary general meeting, with the apparent purpose of replacing the Exco. The much-awaited extraordinary general meeting will be held on May 2.

Meanwhile, Ms Lau pointed out that no more than five of the signatories were present at last month's annual general meeting.

She also highlighted that just-resigned president Claire Nazar had nominated six out of the 11 new Exco members with the support of veteran members.

Ms Lau also said that following the first Exco meeting on April 7, Ms Nazar unilaterally resigned by email on April 8.

The Exco then called for a second Exco meeting on April 15, the earliest possible date, as the Constitution requires at least seven days' notice.

It was at this meeting that Ms Lau was named the new president unopposed.

Ms Lau said the current committee hopes to improve the life of women in Singapore and is pro-women, pro-family and pro-Singapore.

She added that AWARE is a secular organisation - with members from different races, walks of life and belief systems.

She said that as a democratic society, they welcome diverse viewpoints.

Ms Lau added that she has full confidence in her team and that they are ready for the challenges ahead.

Meanwhile, on Friday evening, some members of the new Exco spoke to Channel NewsAsia.

The new Exco said the organisation's old guard is recruiting members to call the extraordinary general meeting.

The new guard said 120 of the 160 signatories were recruited in the last month to swell support for the requisition.

A vote of no confidence may be considered against the new committee at this meeting.

This comes just weeks after the old guard accused the new Exco of recruiting members to "muscle their way onto the Exco" in the society's annual general meeting.

When asked of their intention of joining AWARE, the new Exco said they wanted to bring fresh ideas to the organisation and improve the quality of life of women in Singapore. They are also planning programmes to help women who are suffering during the economic downturn.



I thought I was pretty good at bending my brainz around stuff, even quantum physics, but this latest news is just too much for me.

I... erm... I'm actually lost for words.

As such, Fresh Brainz will adjourn from this topic, at least until the new Exco actually organizes some dubious activities, if they ever have the chance.

Back to your regularly scheduled mix of wacky research, fun science events and my endless blathering about systems science!

*Update (18 Apr 2009): Josie Lau was actually nominated by Claire Nazar! (1 clash settled, 1 heats up - TODAYonline)

*Latest Update (20 Apr 2009): Josie Lau says that the takeover was not a planned coup. (Aware chief answers critics - ST)