In a closed session of the Students’ Union Council on the 27th April, SU President Nsikan Edung survived a motion of no confidence by just four votes. While 21 out of 37 voted in favour of Edung’s dismissal, this majority did not reach the two thirds necessary to force his resignation.
The motion followed an altercation between the President and another student at Ocean nightclub on 28th March, where Edung allegedly refused to desist in spite of calls from Ocean staff and other students to show restraint. The sabbatical committee argued that in these actions Nsikan had displayed, “unacceptable behaviour in a public forum,” and concluded that he had, “demonstrated a continuing, harmful incompetence and a severe lack of judgement in making decisions in the best interests of the students and the Union.”
A motion of censure had already been passed against the President last term, after unfavourable reports on his conduct while in China representing the Union. At the Ningbo campus, Edung wrote on Facebook that he was, “pissing our [SU] money away,” and, “ruining diplomatic relations.” Since the recent allegations followed these events, the sabbatical committee argued that Nsikan had, “failed to recognise the importance and pertinence,” of the censure, and proposed a motion of no confidence as a consequence.
Edung said, “I have apologised to anybody who may have been offended but I have always maintained that my actions have had no impact on the University or Students’ Union. The way this has been handled, to me, demonstrates why so many are disillusioned with student politics, with little thought given to the views of students in the decision to bring forward such a controversial motion. Despite this, I still believe that there is still much to do and I will continue to perform my duties as President for the remainder of my term.”
As the motion has failed to pass, Nsikan is now set to finish his term before handing over to President-Elect Rob Greenhalgh.