Nothing new at ANU
By Kerryn Williams
CANBERRA — Less than 800 students voted in the students' association elections at the Australian National University last week. This was due in part to a strike and teaching bans imposed by the National Tertiary Education and Industry Union.
Harry Greenwell from the VOICE ticket won the presidency with 392 votes. The ACTIVATE! candidate for president, Resistance member Natalie Zirngast, received 227 votes. Greenwell previously held the position of general secretary which he used to demobilise the campaign against education cuts, despite being elected on a "progressive" platform.
VOICE also won the position of education officer, and about half of the general representative positions. The Australian Democrats' student club won the positions of general secretary, treasurer and social officer, plus several general representative positions. The Labor right and the ACTIVATE! ticket won a general representative position each.
Resistance activist David Gosling, who ran for education officer on the ACTIVATE! ticket, commented: "Our election campaign was very useful in raising the issue of the need to fight attacks on education among a broader layer of students. But the relatively low vote for the left shows that we still need to convince students that they must take an active role in their student organisations and that these organisations should be run by activists instead of bureaucrats.
"Both the VOICE and Democrat tickets included opposition to the cuts in their election platform so it will be interesting to see if next years' students' association will commit itself to supporting and actively building the campaign."