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Welcome to our Election Edition. I’ve spent a great deal of time thinking about what exactly an SRC is, what they’re meant to do, and who should be on it. I’ve also spent a lot of time thinking about this year’s SRC and their performance. Here are my views. I attended the last Student Forum because all our News journos were writing tests that evening. The meeting was interesting and the
SRC have achieved a number of great things this year. However, they could have been better (and I got a sense that they know it too). A lot of time and energy was wasted by this year’s SRC on infighting. It’s not too hard to find the attacks, both general and personal, on Twitter. And then I’ve also seen their Whatsapp chats. Too often this fighting happened along political lines. It’s in these times that they forgot their common purpose – the students. Instead of burying their pride or giving someone else the chance to explain themselves, members stubbornly stuck to their agendas and took forever to work their way to a compromise. What’s more, students could see that these solutions were not the solutions of a united SRC. The thing is, the most important thing about the SRC is that they represent the students. Not just some, but all the students at UP. When you get onto the SRC, you’re supposed to leave all your agendas, bias and prejudices at the door in order to represent everyone and represent them fairly. That means that if you run under EFFSC-UP, you represent the Afriforum aligned student too, or if you run under Daso, you represent the Sasco student as well, regardless of your views on them. I don’t believe in students running under political societies for SRC because it makes it much harder to become independent when you step onto the SRC. When you’re part of a political society, you should fully believe in that party’s national and regional agendas. However, it’s not okay to push them onto students or use them to influence the education of others that don’t abide by them. If your convictions are strong, my point that it’s just that much harder to put them aside is proven. Don’t get me wrong: political societies have a place on campus.
The Student Forum is a very serious event where the SRC is held accountable to the student population, and gives the students a chance to have their voice heard. However, the proceedings tend to get a bit heavy, so here are some ways to lighten up the mood.... in a way that is friendly and nonviolent.
I don’t have much space this week, which is okay, I guess, as I plan to complain a bit.
I encounter a lot of marketing every day. Often it’s on Twitter, on posters and in the adverts we place in Perdeby. Nothing grates my cheese more than poor language usage in marketing. Not even people that take the elevator to the fourth floor of the HSB. Here are some prime examples from this week:
Many of the residences posted about their Serenade groups on Twitter this week, with many of these tweets praising their groups. Many of them told me that these groups “did so good tonight”. What are they? Superheroes? Because there are few ways they can “do good”. The phrase they were looking for was, “They did well.” Or, “They did super well.” Or even, “They did so very well that no group will beat them.” Stop telling me they “did good” until they own capes.
Other residences had problems with spelling. Checking your spelling in a 140 character sentence is not difficult or time consuming, guys. Especially with spell check and Google. If you were writing an essay, I’d understand. But these are just photo captions and tweets. At the very least, correct the mistake.
Lastly, we have the SRC candidate supplement. Thank goodness it’s a paid advert or I would have said something. I looked through it and some candidates haven’t got a manifesto or photo because they didn’t hand them in on time. These are vital to marketing yourself as the best candidate. Why on earth would I vote for you as someone to manage a portfolio when you can’t even manage to hand in a manifesto on time?
I’ve had to sacrifice some of my editorial space for our Oppikoppi winners, but their photos are so cool that I really don’t mind.
I enjoyed listening to Elmarie, our Entertainment editor, tell me some of the stories our entrants included in their emails.
Craig Sloane and Sarah Newman managed to conquer the uncomfortable stares of the security guards and the ten degree cold to take several awesome, artsy photos. I wish I could share more of them.
Julia Bain spent four hours hand-sewing her fox tail and ears. She also left fluff all over our office when she came to cuddle our stock of back copies.
Shahir Rajakumar’s is wearing 12lkgs of chain mail in his photo. Apparently it was so heavy that even lifting his arm was a feat. I certainly hope he doesn’t plan to wear it at Oppikoppi.
On that note, if you are heading to Oppikoppi for the first time, there is plenty of advice for you on our Entertainment pages. There’s also a hilarious Oppikoppi video about preparing for Oppi on our Youtube channel. We recruited some of our talented drama student staff for it.
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