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'Foolish' attitudes threaten ICE's future

Letters

I am very disturbed by the reasons for Roger Sainsbury's resignation as recorded in his statement (NCE 22 February).

I am even more disturbed by President Dwyer's response when he alluded to the exercise of democracy in our Institution. This matter cannot rest as it presently stands.

Those in our society imbued with public authority must exercise that authority in a reasonable manner. Members of Council are required to act in a reasonable and legal manner. What we see unfolded before us is a classic case of one saying black and all the others saying white and, because the greater number say white, black must be wrong. How foolish and how dangerous.

But on a wider perspective, such cases are not new. The Romans knew of them. They even framed the relevant question which must now be answered: quis custodet custodies? (Who guards the guards? ) We must have an independent inquiry into this matter. The matter cannot be left with the Institution's Council otherwise we shall see another Roman truism come to the fore: nemo judex in causa sua (no-one may be a judge in his own cause).

I want to know what has gone on here and I want to know if I have wrongly been denied the right to vote which I was led to believe would be mine. The privy councillors also need to be made aware of the situation.

Roger Sainsbury may be the first past president to resign membership of the Institution in its 181 year history. Unless an inquiry of the type I describe is commissioned, that's all our Institution will have - a history and a history without a future.

G Bathgate (F), 51 Baron's Hill Avenue, Linlithgow, EH49 7JU

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