The Greek Orthodox Community of Oakleigh and District, Sts Anargiri is preparing for its annual General Meeting on Sunday April 18.
The approval of the yearly financial statement will be as expected to top the agenda. However, certain members of the Community, who declined to be named, complained to Neos Kosmos that for the first time the financial statement which was sent to members ahead of the General Meeting was not in Greek.
“How do you expect the majority of members who are first generation migrants and who at best have basic knowledge of English to understand what they’re reading,” one Sts Anargiri member asked rhetorically.
“More importantly, how do you expect them to approve or disapprove this statement,” the same member added. When contacted by Neos Kosmos the President of the Community Angelo Sardelis explained that this occured due to time constraints.
“We received the financial statement from the independent auditors completed and signed on March 31 at around 7:30 to 8 pm… so we had limited time because of Easter as well as both the Catholic and the Orthodox coincided to send out the statements to our members,” Mr Sardelis said.
He further clarified that a number of copies have also been produced in Greek that will be distributed on the day of the General Meeting.
Another issue of contention regarding the financial statement sent is that financial figures for the Greek Orthodox College of Sts Anargiri are not presented separately. Although the school is part of the Community it is a separate legal entity and as such its financial performance has to be shown independently.
Despite this being a common practice in the past, Mr Sardelis argued that to the best of his recollection last year’s financial statement did not include separate figures for the school.
“I believe last year’s financial statement had the same format as this year since we used the services of the same independent auditor company,” he said.
However, he reserved the right to confirm this detail. Members were also informed that on March 10 Chris Damatopoulos was appointed to the Community Board.
When asked to comment about this appointment Mr Sardelis refused to discuss it before the General Meeting was held. When pressed for details he declined to provide any at the time and said that he would gladly do so after the Meeting.
When questioned if this appointment was unconstitutional he was categorical: “Of course not!”