SU President Nsikan Edung has survived a vote of no confidence at last night’s SU Council. Although a majority of votes (24 vs 16) were cast against him, this did not reach the two-thirds required to result in his dismissal.
The Motion of No Confidence was tabled following an incident at Ocean nightclub last term, where Nsikan was reported to have been in a heated altercation with another student for 40 minutes which later resulted in a physical stand-off outside the nightclub. This follows reports of Edung’s disorderly conduct whilst abroad on business at Ningbo campus, during which he wrote on Facebook that he was ‘pissing our [SU] money away’ and ‘ruining diplomatic relations’. While these previous actions had resulted in a Motion of Censure against Edung, the SU Sabbatical Exec – who were backing the motion – argued that this continuing and persistent behaviour was damaging to the Union, and should result in his dismissal.
Edung was elected last year in a flurry of change, his work on the ‘bring home the bacon’ campaign and renegade style seeing him boosted to the top of the pile from a position of relatively little Students’ Union involvement. A year on and far from promoting change, the Students’ Union Exec appear to have lost faith in their President. Edung himself admits that ‘he has struggled to maintain a dignified profile’, repeatedly vowing to review his behavior.
The result also raises questions as to the nature of the SU Exec and whether it’s productive to be censuring and no-confing individuals rather than focussing on the core aims of the SU. Council has, as ever, erred on the side of caution, voting down the second no-confidence this year.