Manipulating the proxy form

Here are other proxy forms from another condo that a reader sent me. They are from two different AGMs so we can see that this manipulation is not a one-time occurrence but a standard operating procedure for the property management company that prepares this condo's AGM information packages.

Proxy form for 2013 AGM

Notice that the name of the incumbent that the manager wants elected was printed on the proxy with a FOR or AGAINST.

This form may have owners believing that they can either vote for Elizabeth or against Elizabeth. There is nothing to indicate that they can use their proxy to vote for a different candidate.

Proxy form for 2012 AGM

This is very cute. Notice that unlike our political elections for government office, the candidates are not listed in alphabetical order, either by their last names or by their first names. This was done by design.

Maureen is the president and so she is listed as first choice. Keith is a director who often disagrees with the other four directors and the property manager, so he is placed in third spot on the list.

Frank is not a board member and as far as we can tell, this was the first time a candidate's name, who was not an incumbent director, was printed on the proxy form. Frank was recruited by four of the directors to run against Keith and the four also actively campaigned to have Frank elected.

Frank was placed in the second spot.

Why it is so cute
Notice Note 4, printed above, where it states: "to vote for the candidates named below and in the order set out below."

There is nothing anywhere in the AGM package that states that the election is to fill only two director positions. It would be easy to think that there are three open positions. Owners could check off FOR beside all three candidates thinking that they were voting to re-elect Keith. Of course, they were not.

There is nothing to say that the owners can vote for any individual that they wish for or even that they are allowed to add any other names on the proxy form.

Putting Keith at the bottom, shows that the property manager and the other board members are quite comfortable rigging the proxy form to their advantage.

The real Form 9
Here is the Form 9 that is available from the ministry and is posted on the Internet. This what the Form 9s shown above should have looked like.

Look at the Note below the blank spaces for the candidates names. It says:
"Print the name of any individual whom you wish to elect to the board of directors."

Who prepared these Form 9s?
The property manager. Perhaps she had help from others at her management company.

What is disturbing is that this is the second time in the last couple of months that I seen proxy forms that were rigged to give a candidate, or candidates, an unfair advantage in a democratic election.

Not a novel concept
Americans and Canadians believe that our form of democracy is so important that we urge the leaders of the third-world nations to follow our democratic model. However, when I look at this proxy it reminds me about how North Korea runs its elections. Here are excerpts from a recent article in the National Post.

"North Korean media claims Kim Jong-un won 100% of the vote in his riding, which had 100% turnout
Associated Press | March 10, 2014

PYONGYANG, North Korea — With no one else on the ballot, state media reported Monday that supreme leader Kim Jong-un was not only elected to the highest legislative body in North Korea, he won with the unanimous approval of his district, which had 100% turnout.

Voters in the election have no choice who to vote for — there is only one candidate’s name on the ballot for each district. Instead, they have the choice of voting yes or no, and according to official accounts virtually all choose yes."

Well isn't this something. Instead of us Canadians teaching North Korea how to run elections, it appears that some of our condo property management companies are picking up tips from the North Koreans.

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