The Petrie Out campaign were today preparing to write to Hibs owner Sir Tom Farmer requesting that Rod Petrie be removed from the club.
Fed-up fans made their feelings known about the chairman at a rally outside Easter Road on Saturday at the same time as members of the Working Together fans umbrella group were voting against Petrie in a meeting with chief executive Leeann Dempser inside the stadium.
However, ultimately the only people who have the power to make a decision are Petrie himself, who has a 10 per cent stake in the club, or the owner.
Petrie Out campaign leader Paul Kane told the Evening News: “We’re going to try and get in touch with Sir Tom Farmer today. As well as the rally outside, there was also a vote among the 31 members of the Working Together group in the meeting with Leeann Dempster and 31 hands went up in favour of Rod Petrie going.
“That means there was a unanimous decision inside the Working Together meeting and a unanimous decision outside. We’ve not heard anything – they’ve not spoken to us, but it doesn’t look like Rod is going to do the honourable thing. Leeann Dempster has basically told us in the meeting and through the papers that she can’t make the decision so really now the only person who can do it is Sir Tom Farmer.
“We will write to him by email on behalf of the whole Petrie Out campaign. That means we can show everybody the letter we send and nobody can say it’s not happened. It’s the only option now because nobody seems to have listened to us so far.”
The Petrie Out campaign was also intending to ask Farmer what his future plans are for the club and if he would be open to some form of supporter representation on the board. Kane continued:
“As well as asking him if he will get rid of Rod Petrie, we will also ask him what involvement does he want from the fans in the club? It would be silly of the owner not to speak to the fans and let them know what his plans are for the club. Our main focus first and foremost will be on Rod Petrie, though, as we know the owner is the one person who definitely does have the authority to get rid of him.”
After Saturday’s events, Kane is increasingly optimistic that the campaign will prevail in ousting Petrie. “We’re more confident now than ever but the key decision will obviously be from Tom Farmer,” he said.
“If he backs Rod, it will be a hard battle. If he listens to the fans, it will be easier. Brian Houston [director] and Leeann Dempster were at the meeting on Saturday and the rally got good coverage in the press, so the owner will be aware of the groundswell of opinion. You could see on Saturday, it’s not just a small group, it’s a campaign that’s now growing. People now feel Rod Petrie is depriving the club of money because people aren’t going while he’s still involved in the club.”