The defunct Otago Bowling Club has been placed into
liquidation as part of an investigation into what happened with
the proceeds of the sale of its club and ground last year.
This comes after an investigation by the registrar of
incorporated societies was sparked after it received a
complaint about the sale of the club last June. Bowls Dunedin
initially made a complaint to police, who then passed it on
to the Companies Office, which manages the registrar of
incorporated societies. It is understood the club's buildings
and land in Arthur St were sold for $350,000.
Associate Judge Rob Osborne approved the application for
liquidation in the High Court at Dunedin yesterday. The
registrar had sought that the club be liquated so it could
further investigate allegations, which included that the
proceeds of the sale were spilt among members - going against
the club's constitution, which stated that it should have
been given to community interests.
In his ruling Associate Judge Osborne said the investigation
had found that payments made to the club's members from the
proceeds of the sale may not have been properly authorised.
It also found that there were ''serious shortcomings'' in the
way the club was run and that the sale itself may not have
received proper authorisation, Associate Judge Osborne said.
The Otago Bowling Club, which was formed in 1906 and folded
in 2011 because of insufficient members, did not appear at
Bowls New Zealand region six community development officer
Pete Thomson said he was ''very confident'' the liquidator
would get to the bottom of what occurred.
It was his understanding that all the proceeds from the sale
were split among club members - which went against the club's
''It's pretty black and white what should have happened. The
constitution said all money should have been distributed to a
sporting body or back to the community,'' he said.
Bowls Dunedin chairman Richard Hamilton was ''delighted'' the
investigation was moving forward and hoped that the money
could be recovered.
It was important the issue was dealt with, as the message
needed to be sent to all sports clubs that they needed to
abide by their constitutions, Mr Hamilton said.
Bowls Dunedin had not sought the proceeds of the sale, he
It is understood the club was struck off the list of
incorporated societies in January 2011 because it had not
filed any financial returns, but it had to reincorporate
before it could sign the sale agreement. Attempts to contact
any of the club's former members were unsuccessful.