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Sunday 31 August 2014

Mystery of 32 extra votes blamed on 'human error'

Declan O'Brien

Published 08/12/2012 | 05:00

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THE admission that 32 unexplained votes turned up in the recent Glanbia Co-op ballot at Gowran Park will be a cause of some concern for both shareholders and management at the dairy processor. The mistake has been blamed by ICOS – who are the body charged with overseeing the vote – on "human error".

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In reply to questions from the Irish Independent, the organisation said that "minor differences" in votes were "not unusual or of undue concern".

It has also been suggested that since ICOS and Glanbia were aware the mistake had no impact on the result, that it did not really matter.

But the fact the margin to carry the milk supplier vote was just 2pc or around 60 votes, means that small mistakes can have big implications.

This is easily the biggest deal for some time in the Irish dairy sector. At stake is a decision worth €230m overall and €160m for 16,000 shareholders of Glanbia Co-op.

Both Glanbia and ICOS have insisted that the vote of November 28 was valid. Some shareholders may argue that point but one thing is clear, next Wednesday's ballot will have to be beyond reproach.

Irish Independent

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