The 2014 ANUSA Social Officer will be elected at a Student Representative Council (SRC) meeting on Thursday October 24 at 5:30pm. As required by the ANUSA Constitution, only elected ANUSA 2013 representatives will have voting rights.
The election is being held to replace the previous 2014 Social Officer-elect Lachlan McDermott, who unexpectedly resigned last week before officially beginning his term on December 1.
A statement on ANUSA’s website explains: “Electing an officer-elect is a grey area in the ANUSA Constitution. After receiving advice from ACT Elections and the ANUSA Legal Officer, unfortunately there is no way of getting around it; ANUSA 2013 SRC needs to elect ANUSA 2014′s Social Officer.”
The 2013 ANUSA SRC comprises all representatives of 2013 ANUSA; the current SRC will review all applications, and at the SRC meeting will hear a short speech from each candidate before voting to elect the 2014 ANUSA Social Officer.
Following McDermott’s resignation it was initially proposed that a motion be raised at the SRC meeting allowing voting rights to be extended to all ANU undergraduate students present, however this was deemed unconstitutional.
“It must be remembered that the ANUSA Constitution is there to provide the procedures and rules for conducting ANUSA business. When it includes specific processes to follow, they must be followed – even in a case like this when it does not seem reasonable.”
However, it is debatable which course of action would be most appropriate. It is not desirable for the 2013 ANUSA SRC to solely have the power to choose a student representative without a democratic vote amongst the student population.
But that said, the audience of an SRC meeting with a vote opened to all students present would be dominated by the nominees for Social Officer and their support groups; Social Officer would be gifted to whichever candidate could drag to the meeting the highest number of friends or members of their faction.
Cameron Wilson, 2014 ANUSA President-elect, has stated that the 2014 ANUSA Executive will address the flaws regarding officers-elect in the ANUSA Constitution next year by “creating a provision to deal with vacancies before a position is taken up”.
Nominations for the position are currently open, and all potential candidates are encouraged to contact the ANUSA General Secretary at email@example.com.
Although nominations will remain open until the SRC meeting, Woroni understands that there are currently three students who have nominated for 2014 Social Officer: Henry Ladd, Dan Trevanion and Milly Cooper, who is a current 2013 General Representative.
According to Annika Humphries, 2014 ANUSA Vice-President-elect, the 2014 ANUSA Executive will not be endorsing any candidates.