Anti-CSG campaigner files counter complaint about Metgasco
ANTI-CSG campaigner Michael Qualmann has lodged a formal complaint about Metgasco with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission, just weeks after the company lodged a complaint against him.
Metgasco claimed the Lismore man had potentially damaged the company's share price.
The complaint was filed in regards to Mr Qualmann's letter-writing campaign, which warned shareholders their investment was under threat by local opposition to Metgasco's plans.
According to a Metgasco statement last month, Mr Qualmann's letters contained "misleading statements which had the potential to give rise to a false market in the trading of Metgasco securities".
But Mr Qualmann has responded by making a counter complaint to ASIC over Metgasco's alleged "misleading and deceptive communications to the stock exchange".
He said Metgasco had consistently misled shareholders by highlighting a Richmond Valley Council "push poll" that showed the industry enjoyed 70% support in the Northern Rivers if it was proven safe.
He also claimed the company had "ignored" a more "scientific" Southern Cross University poll that found 65% of Richmond Valley residents opposed CSG, as well as a Lismore council election poll of 2012, conducted by the Australian Electoral Commission, that showed 87% of Lismore residents opposed CSG.
Mr Qualmann claimed Metgasco had breached its "continuous disclosure obligations" under the ASX listing rules and corporations law by not proactively advising the market of this information, which could damage share price.
But Metgasco shareholder John Vaughan was sceptical the complaints would pass muster.
Mr Vaughan said he was involved in a Federal Court case against construction giant Becton over non-disclosure to shareholders, a matter he tried unsuccessfully to progress through ASIC.
"I've made really serious complaints to ASIC, which didn't go anywhere," he said.