BREAKING: Zhixian Wang Re-Included in USU Board Election
WORDS BY EDEN FAITHFULL
Previously excluded USU Board candidate Zhixian Wang has been re-included into the election at 12am today.
Wang was excluded from the race due to the USU Returning Officer’s ruling that she had breached r 8.10.1(l) and 8.10.1(p)(ii) of the Regulations of the University of Sydney Union. More specifically, Wang had been accused of bribery, and for making promises that were “misleading or deceptive”.
Through social media site ‘WeChat’, Wang had allegedly solicited votes from other students by offering them money using the ‘red packets’ function. According to a fellow USU candidate, Wang, or a member of her campaigning team, had also made promises to ““provide you with fake ID and drugs that make you sleep if elected” written in chalk.
In a statement posted publicly by Wang following her exclusion, she defended herself against the above allegations.
In referring to the ‘red packets’, she claimed, “these packets contain a small amount of money (equivalent to few Australian dollars), and when intended for multiple recipients (as in my case), with the amount of each portion randomly determined. With elements of fun, luck and tradition, it has been a social norm for users to send ‘red packets’ in group chats.”
“The allegation contained in the complaint to the RO that I chalked “I (Zhixian) would provide fake IDs and hallucinating drugs that make people sleep if you vote for me and I’m elected” is a complete distortion of facts. The context was always satirical ... and for the purpose of engagement of apathetic voters in a voluntary voting system.”
Following an appeal of the Returning Officer's decision, Wang has now been formally re-introduced to the election and her candidacy is once again viable. Wang has now missed five days of the election period, which could accrue possible disadvantages to her chances in being elected.
Pulp reached out to Wang for comment.
"I have been allowed to re-enter the election, feeling incredibly motivated and grateful to have a second chance. I think this is an exciting step towards making the USU elections more accessible to International Students and I am excited to get out there and talk to students about my vision for USU!” she said.
Voting will take place Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday this week.