Members of ICU Council were told earlier today that election results are unlikely to be announced as planned on Thursday, with one election complaint still unresolved and an unsettled atmosphere in the Union offices.
Last Thursday evening saw an emergency meeting of the ICU Executive Committee called after the Rector's forum. Shortly afterwards, Live! has been told, ICU President and Returning Officer John Collins was seen "having a real go at exec members", appearing to be extremely upset. The atmosphere in the Union offices the next day has been described as "stony", with discussions held behind firmly closed doors.
When asked about this, Eric Lai (the deputy Returning Officer) told Live! that he was "unable to disclose the content of the meeting", and Mr Collins himself did not reply to Live!'s email at all. However, on Friday, the day after the meeting, candidates received an email re-affirming instructions that any elections queries should be emailed only to the "[email protected]", and to no other address.
Since it is known that one presidential candidate incurred a fine earlier that same evening, it is possible that the meeting concerned election complaints - one of which, it seems, greatly incensed Mr Collins. The large number of Union Officer candidates, coupled with that of NUS Delegate candidates, means that a number of the Executive Committee have a conflict of interest in any elections matters, either by standing themselves or by the action of seconding. This brings the integrity of any elections-related decisions taken by the Executive into question, with appeals seeming likely.
There is almost certainly more information come, though; Live! Was also told that, out of the six complaints that have been made, four have been upheld and one is still "pending further investigation". It is almost certain that, yet again, elections results will not be announced on time and, given the severity of the Returning Officer's reaction, may be delayed by quite some time.