Candidates for SUPRA General Election announced
WORDS BY SANDRA BUOL
On Wednesday, the ballot draw for the upcoming SUPRA General Elections has been conducted by the Returning Officer. There are 66 candidates nominating for 27 positions, which according to SUPRA is a substantial increase from last year’s numbers. “This is in line with the general trend of increasing interest in SUPRA's affairs,” announced the association on Facebook.
Most candidates are part of one of the 8 tickets: Jinghan for Change, ‘Impact’, Jarkz, Weihong for International, Team for Continuous Improvement, HD Reform, Postgrad Action for Health and Postgrad Action. A small number of candidates face the election as independents. Several candidates seek re-election.
The ticket statements can be viewed here.
The number of tickets and candidates might be a sign that SUPRA has done much good work in the last year after the previous elections were shadowed by several allegations of internal conflicts, racial discrimination and fund mismanagement. Despite this, the voter turnout in the elections of 2017 was historically high with 650 votes. The year before, only 190 votes were cast, which was the general trend in SUPRA election turnouts. In the years preceding, the turnout ranged in the 150–200 mark.
It was last year’s newly-elected Co-Presidents’ aim to attract even more students to participate – not only in the election, but also when it comes to social events. Considering the ever-growing body of postgraduates, the percentage of involved students is still very low. “When I first started, if 10 people came to a SUPRA event, that was considered a success. Now we aim for 200. There’s guests coming to our council meetings, students who come up to us and actually ask to be involved,” says Co-President Mariam Mohammed.
Any postgraduate student who is also a SUPRA member is eligible to vote in this election. Current Postgraduate students who are not SUPRA members can subscribe at the time of voting. Voting is conducted by postal ballot, which will be issued on Wednesday, April 11, and two days of on-campus polling at a polling booth located outside the SUPRA offices and the Jane Foss Russell courtyard on Thursday, April 26 and Friday, April 27, from 11am to 7pm.
Polls will close at 7pm on Friday, April 27.