CII: PFS had ‘astounding reaction’ to governance failings

Search sponsored by
CII: PFS had ‘astounding reaction’ to governance failings
CEO of the CII, Alan Vallance

The Chartered Insurance Institute has said it is sad, but not surprised, at the Personal Finance Society’s reaction to the evidence of its alleged governance failings.

In an update to members on Friday evening (January 27), CII group chief executive officer Alan Vallance said it was important to provide individuals with an update, which he didn’t see as appropriate to do until the PFS member consultation period was coming to an end.

“There has been a lot said and written over the last few weeks about the CII group board’s decision to appoint further institute directors to the PFS board,” he said.

“I’ve also received many emails and some letters from PFS members. If you are one of the people who have sent them in, thank you. I’ve read all of them, and today I want to address each of the main concerns raised.”

Last week, the CII hosted a series of live Q&As with local institutes, PFS regional councils and general insurance societies.

He said: “We are currently navigating an unavoidably difficult period, with some very vocal critics. However, as painful as it is, we will come through it.”

Interim chief executive at the PFS, Don MacIntyre, has since acknowledged the CII's Friday update, as well as a letter sent by the CII to the PFS board on January 25.

MacIntyre told members in an update today: "Friday’s message and the CII letter to the PFS contains information that is extremely important to address, and I will be taking this content to the board before any formal comment.

"I continue to maintain that it is not helpful for the situation facing the CII and the PFS to be played out publicly in the media, with messages and assertions continuing to find their way into the public domain.

"Considering the best interests of the organisation and of its members it is not appropriate to comment on these matters at this time."

Governance failures

Vallance said the CII wrote to PFS representatives to make them aware of its governance concerns on multiple occasions throughout 2022, and this culminated in legal correspondence detailing the governance failures in November. 

“This makes it very disappointing to continue to see members of the PFS board saying they were not made aware, and that the CII has not previously raised any governance concerns with the PFS,” he said. 

“This is simply incorrect.”

In December, the CII announced its decision to appoint a majority of directors to the PFS and three institute directors to the PFS board with immediate effect, following failed mediation attempts.