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September 25, 2011 | by  | in News | [ssba]

VUWSA Candidates Forum Goes Well. Which is nice.

Token mentions of the impending “VSM environment” dominated the VUWSA Candidates Forum on Wednesday, most of which were overwhelmingly negative.

The Forum attracted a large crowd, many of whom appeared to be genuinely interested in the candidates’ ideas. Unfortunately time constraints meant a number of questions went unasked and the final few candidates were rushed through their speeches.

This was particularly problematic as the final speakers were those standing for the most important roles within VUWSA—Treasurer, the Vice Presidencies (Welfare and Academic), and the Presidency—and were the candidates most students wanted to quiz.

Lone presidential candidate Bridie Hood told the crowd she wants VUWSA to remain true to the goals it established 112 years ago. She focused on financial sustainability; student representation; student engagement; and an active student community.

Both candidates for Vice President (Academic), Josh Wright and Craig Carey spoke knowledgeably of both VUWSA and the university.

Standing unopposed for Vice President (Welfare), Ta’ase Vaonga plugged her catchphrase a “visible, vibrant and viable VUWSA” and highlighted plans to encourage work with the International and Clubs Officers.

The forum saw three lively candidates for the position of Treasurer. William Guzzo spoke with great enthusiasm about reviving VUWSA while Bruno Simpson touted his business and accounting experience.

Zanian Steele made sweeping promises, stating he would cut VUWSA salaries and will resign if he cannot achieve this. Also standing for Publications Committee Representative, Steele received rapturous applause as he waved a copy of Salient and stated: “If you don’t want controversy, get the bloody Economist!”

Also standing for this position, Salient co-editor Elle Hunt stated her experience working with the magazine will give her the knowledge necessary to be successful in the position.
“And if they decide to sell it I will make sure they get a good price,” she said.

Most other candidates spoke informatively and enthusiastically with most emphasising the challenges VUWSA will face in light of VSM. The exception was Kiran Mathews, who said he had no idea what the Activities Officer did and had “no opinions or passion.”

Students can vote online or in person in the VUWSA General Election from the 26th to 29th of October.

Check out the Salient Facebook page for a link to the candidates’ video manifestos and the centre pull-out in this week’s issue for more information


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  1. Deandre says:

    You’ve got it in one. Couldn’t have put it btteer.

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