Friday, May 12, 2006

United Grand Lodge of England fails to re-appoint Grand Secretary; election irregularities cited

Grand Lodge officers of the "mother lodge" in the United Kingdom, the United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE), are usually appointed and re-appointed for very long terms.

It came as a surprise when on April 25, former banking official and long-time Grand Secretary and Grand Scribe E of the United Grand Lodge of England was not reappointed after a Disciplanary Hearing the previous day.

Here's all UGLE has said on the matter, from their website:
We are aware of speculation over the reasons for the non re-appointment of Robert Morrow as Grand Secretary and Grand Scribe E, most of which is totally inaccurate.

On the 25th April 2006, following a Disciplinary Hearing, Bro Morrow was dismissed and as a consequence was not re-appointed as Grand Secretary. The reasons related to the implementation of the agreed policy of United Grand Lodge of England in relation to overseas Grand Lodges and his reporting of his activities in this area.

The disciplinary process is continuing, and steps to appoint a Grand Secretary will not be taken until after it is completed.
Brother Cooksey of the blog Alabama-Free-Mason (formerly Free-Mason-Alert) has reprinted an article from the U.K. Guardian under the title "Turmoil in England" that sheds a bit more light on the matter than UGLE has.

The report in part says:
With so many expat businessmen living in Spain, some British masons are members of masonic lodges in England and Spain. When the Grand Lodge of Spain came to elect a new grand master, a number of British masons living in Spain were able to vote in the elections.

According to one English mason, Mr Morrow was accused of manipulating the election by urging his British members to back a particular candidate in Spain, a charge which allegedly led to the grand master of Spain to write to the English lodge, condemning Mr Morrow's behaviour as "absolutely outrageous." It is understood that he categorically denies the charges. Documentary evidence that he did not interfere in the affairs of the Spanish lodge will form part of an internal appeal against his sacking.

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