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GSA Farce Drags On

Jun 27 2007 23:15
Ashley Brown
The wranglings over the election for the GSA chair are continuing, with more problems appearing all the time.
A farce beyond even ICU's usual high standard

The farcical election for GSA Chair has still not been resolved, despite the current Deputy President (Finance and Services) Jon Matthews having been told he had won after results were counted last week.

With only ten votes cast the returning officer, Deputy President (Graduate Students) Shama Rahman, complained to the executive about her own election, looking to have it re-run with better advertising. The complaint was sent to the Union Court, along with another one by Deputy President (Education and Welfare) Ben Harris.

The second complaint was about a Live! discussion post, where the observer of the count for Jon Matthews had revealed information which could narrow down the field of who had cast their votes. The post was edited on the request of the Deputy President (Clubs and Societies) Eric Lai, currently Acting President, however it now seems there has been an attempt to disqualify Matthews for the actions of his observer. Disqualification of the winning candidate for actions which took place after the results had been announced would certainly be novel, particularly as it was not possible to identify exactly who had voted from the post.

As a result the saga drags on, with postgrads just as oblivious to the lack of a proper announcement about the next GSA chair as they were to the voting in the first place. Live! wonders who really benefits from these complaints, other than Sabbatical Officers who have nothing better to do than play poker, which seems to be the only thing happening in certain offices at the moment.

As a postgraduate, this reporter is not impressed.

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Discussion about “GSA Farce Drags On”

The comments below are unmoderated submissions by Live! readers. The Editor accepts no liability for their content, nor for any offence caused by them. Any complaints should be directed to the Editor.
Jun 28 2007 08:42

In their defence, the Sabbatical Officers in question are not only to be found playing Poker. They quite often attempt to beat each others high scores on mobile phone games too.

I don't imagine that anybody has cause to complain about important work not getting done while such decisive competitions are being waged. (/sarcasm)

2. Karl   
Jun 28 2007 10:02

Am I right in thinking that there is no minimum turnout required for an election to be legitimate? Because if so it's ridiculous that the returning officer can complain about the outcome of an election just based on turnout. Actually it's ridiculous the returning officer would complain about her own conduct in the first place! Announcing to Jon Matthews that he had won and then lodging the complaint is very unprofessional and it would have been nice if just one election this year could have been farce free.

3. An0n   
Jun 28 2007 10:39

I find it mind boggling that Shama seems so oblivious to how asinine she looks complaining about an election which it was her JOB to make sure ran correctly.....

I agree with Karl, after far to many farces this year, it would be nice that at least one could go smoothly, anyone might think that she was arguing because she didnt like the outcome.

Lets hope Court sorts things out..... preferably fast.

Jun 28 2007 11:56

Can I point out, as an executive member, that the complaint sent to court was NOT the number of votes cast, but another issue with the vote. I'm not sure if I can say what so I wont.

Jun 28 2007 13:24

Ridiculous. I think anyone with any knowledge of Rahman and Matthews' history would say that the complaint to Exec appears to be motivated by a personal dislike. Matthews was, of course, the sabb that prepared the monstrous dossier on Shama for the no-confidence motion; I suspect you don't forgive things like that readily.

However, I would suggest a turnout of ten votes indicates that PGs simply don't care/understand the GSA.

Jun 28 2007 14:04

Or that it was badly advertised and fell on a weekend where a lot of people were at the ball or away.

Do PGs not understand the GSA, or does the GSA not understand PGs? There's very little call for social events costing ?20 in my lab...

7. helen   
Jun 28 2007 22:41

Hello discussion people, I don?t go to this uni well in truth I?m only 14 but if some one could reply to this it would be helpful as I?ve been trying to find the required admission grades for nigh on 5 minutes and cant so if some one whose doing physics could just comment on the minimum that would be fab.

Ohh and dose any one else here want to work at cern?

Jun 28 2007 23:17


I think you may have failed the first test though, finding the information in the first place ;)

9. :O   
Jun 29 2007 00:00

Univeristy never even entered my head at 14. GCSEs and A-Levels still to go!

Jun 29 2007 00:08

post 7 is one of the most terrifying things I've ever read.

Jun 29 2007 13:16

what a girl thinking about going to imperial?

Jun 29 2007 15:51

Nah, being 14 and even having heard of Imperial. I heard of imperial when i started looking to universities to apply to in 6th form.

13. helen   
Jun 29 2007 17:21

Why is it terrifying? I was in the middle of an ICT lesson and my apparently fascist principle used some filter to block face-book and youtube; I mean what else is a girl supposed to do?

Thanks to the person who left the url

Jun 29 2007 19:35

?50 says Helen will be a Sabbatical if she comes to Imperial. Posting on Live! 4 YEARS before she can even come to uni. Amazing

15. Hmm.   
Jul 03 2007 09:54

I think at that age I just assumed anywhere worth aiming for would want straight A's, and even if they didn't, I wanted straight A's anyway, just because. And I would have done it if it wasn't for that pesky 5th A'level in a "contrasting subject"...

Jul 03 2007 16:01

Pshhh, I think ts awful that people miss out on so much of how good it is to be 16,17,18. Man, the last thing I was doing after school was homework, thats what free periods were for. It'd be down the pub/go watch a film/work for money.

I got into Imperial physics on AABC, and graduated with a first. Have some fun when you're 15 Helen, you'll never get that time back.

17. helen   
Jul 03 2007 17:53

Oh James you really, really don?t need to worry about me; as you don?t know me I don?t think I can relate this to you with out sounding an arrogant conceited little something or other but here goes. I am as far for nerd as some one can be if you picture me as some braces glasses, sad, never had a child hood-Brighton?s answer to ugly betty stereotypical geek??you are very oh so very mistaken.

Okay, okay on paper im a boff I?ll give you that but most people would never associate the I love Tolkien - lord of the rings, Nintendo-Zelda playing and want to work at cern me with the me they know. Not that not aware of both though.

For instance half the ?nerds? in my class have only just started not finding me intimidating as all the way through yr 7 and 8 I and the rest of my friends never talked to then unless it was to call them boffins or to tell them to p*** off, I told you I?d sound pompous and mean but oh well im not mean any more.

People aren?t one dimensional you know just because I?m clever dosent mean I don?t have fun, I drink ,don?t smoke though think its bad for hair and skin, have a boyfriend and enjoy all normal teenage girl kind off things. This was a long comment I'm sorry but people making assumptions about me p***es me right off. My generation has more fun that your cannabis is no longer a class b drug and is easy to come by.HA. don?t you dare tell me I don?t have fun and I?m losing my life you when it?s a life you jack s**t about.

Sorry again for the length. i was angry

18. hmm   
Jul 03 2007 17:58

Helen, it's an awfully good job that it's Physics you're applying for rather than English!

Jul 03 2007 18:02


Good reply girl. However I was responding to "Hmmm" who wrote "just assumed anywhere worth aiming for would want straight A's", a common misconception, and one that a disturbing number of parents seem to be keen to force into their kids' minds. And pushy parents are my pet hate

20. helen   
Jul 03 2007 18:23

ok looks like my little rant was for nothing, sorry.

It weird how this was website for posting comments about some kind of farce dragging on but switch to a 14 year old girl who isn?t even a student of the university the site was meant for.

And for that Hmm person grow up and develop a proper sense of humor.

21. Lolz   
Jul 03 2007 20:31

You'd better make sure the admissions tutors don't read that you've smoked cannabis Helen! YOU BAD BAD BAD BAD YOUNG LADY!

Jul 03 2007 20:55

If I were you Helen, I would apply for a joint degree in eg. physics and philosophy at Bristol. 3 years of straight physics geekdom was quite a strain at times. And at the end I feel quite cheated that I got a first, considering how badly I did in the exams.

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