Student proposes to ban societal endorsements of SU candidates.

Written by Toby Cray

A student has put forward the proposal to ban endorsements of candidates by societies in Students’ Union’s elections.

The idea was put forward shortly after the controversial presidential race where Pedram was removed by the SU due to three alleged electoral breaches.

Josh Rogers, a 2nd year Computer Science student, who brought forward this idea, believes the practice hinders a fair election stating:

“If you have a lot of high friends in high positions in societies, is going to really stitch up smaller candidates who may even have an equal number of friends, but just not in the same high positions.”

The process through which candidates receive endorsements is opaque, and solely down to each committee.

One member of a society, who wants to remain anonymous, stated: “Both of us [the president and I] brought a candidate forward, but the society went with Pedram because the president endorsed it.

“There was no formal consultation of who to vote for and why.”

Josh believes this process is detrimental to the democratic process stating: “The popular social societies would all back the eventual winner and that feels a bit like cronyism.”

He continued: “if you want to be elected, you should have the proper skillset and show yourself to be the best candidate, earning popularity from your own merit.”

The idea currently has 8 votes but needs 20 votes to be debated at the student council meeting before it can become Students’ Union policy.

Josh hopes that this idea will help create a more level playing field for candidates who are not as popular.

He thinks that the SU needs to do more, stating: “[The SU] need to make sure that every candidate’s manifesto is published and that everyone is given the adequate resources so that every candidate has a platform to make their campaign heard.”

Toby Cray is a second-year journalism student at the University of Leicester. You can find him on Twitter here: @CrayToby

Image taken by LSM member Ella Johnson

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