No ball-busting at the SU election hustings

Students could only pre-submit generic questions that all candidates were asked. Photo: Josh Jackson

There was little room for scrutiny of each candidate at the University of Lincoln Students’ Union’s elections hustings, on Tuesday, February 24th.

Students were told to submit generic questions on paper slips, for all candidates rather than targeted questions for individuals.

Traditionally at election hustings, the floor is opened for questions once a candidate has outlined their manifesto pledges, meaning constituents can pick on specific points. It also allows for a two-way conversation, as the original questioner can retort, making it harder for a candidate’s rhetoric to go unchallenged.

The hustings took place in the Tower Bars, and the audience mostly consisted of friends of each candidate.

The candidates for each position were called to the front to make a two minute speech outlining their manifesto pledges. Then the candidates were called up again, this time to answer pre-submitted questions.

One of the more interesting questions asked was to the two candidates for the campaigns officer position, Dec Ackroyd and Joe Hicks. They were asked: “A lot has been said about Lincoln students being apathetic. As your role requires student involvement, how will you break the trend?”

Hicks replied: “Talk to students, that’s my big thing. Before, we’ve always presumed what students want, so people haven’t really been interested in getting involved. But, if we find out what they want, how can they not be involved if they’re telling us what to campaign for?”

Ackroyd agreed: “Democracy is a key part of our nation and that needs to be important at the university next year. We need to campaign for what the students want as well as what’s in their interests for the future.”

Only two of the four candidates for the president’s position — Lucy Alborough and Chris Charnley — showed up. Emma Devine, the SU’s vice-president for communications, said that Dan Clewley, a presidential candidate, was ill. She did not mention Scott Pack, the other candidate, or offer a reason for his absence.

The SU’s Media Crew filmed the proceedings and the footage should be up on their website soon, they claim.

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