Paul Abrokwa, one of the leading UEW SRC presidential aspirants, has been disqualified by the vetting committee from the 2018 SRC presidential election to the shock of the University community and chagrin of most students.
His disqualification was grounded on, among other reasons, the fact that he and his running mate, Musah Mohammed Iklilu, are affiliates of the same Hall of residence, an instance that is in flagrant violation of a provision in the SRC Constitution.
It is stated on page 75 of the SRC Constitution, that “Nominations shall be filed in respect of the posts of the Executive Office to the SRC; to wit, President, Secretary, and Treasurer. The nomination form for the president shall have a column for the name of the running mate he intends to appoint who also qualifies to be elected as an Executive Officer, provided that the Presidential candidate and the running mate are not from one and the same hall/block.
Mr. Abrokwa and his running mate are both said to be originally affiliates of University Hall, even though the duo during their encounter with the vetting committee claimed that they had formally requested a change of residential affiliation of Mr. Iklilu and same had been granted.
However, according to the chairman of the SRC Electoral Commission, Steven Arthur, who doubles as the vetting committee chairman, both Mr. Abrakwa and Mr. Iklilu as at the time of filing of their nomination were affiliates of the same hall.
Another reason for Mr. Abrokwa disqualification is false pretense on the part of his running mate. Mr. Iklilu, in his response to a question of when he initiated the processes of changing his residential affiliation, told the vetting committee that he began the process at the beginning of the semester, a claim which has turned out to be untrue, the EC Chairman has said.
The vetting committee chairman added that checks by his committee has also revealed that the running mate of Mr. Abrokwa allegedly lied to the worker’s at the Dean’s office on the reason why he was seeking to change his residential affiliation, thereby flouting the appropriate procedure required before such a request is granted, as stipulated in the Undergraduate Students’ Handbook on Rules and Regulations.
“Upon [our] investigation, he [Mr. Iklilu] lied to the workers at the Dean’s office, that the change had become urgent because he was going to partake in a debate competition. So he needed to change it. That was why they turned a blind eye to that” [due process], Mr. Arthur said.
According to the Students’ handbook on Rules and Regulations: “Any student who wishes to transfer from one Hall to another may do so only once but with the prior consent of the Hall Manager. The conditions are:
(I) Such a student must be known to have a disability which necessitates his/her being accommodated on campus where lectures for his/her course are generally held.
(II) Such a student must present tangible medical reasons backed by a medical certificate from a Government Hospital or endorsed by a Medical Officer in charge of a Government Hospital.
(III) Where the students involved are ready to exchange Halls.
Meanwhile, Adam Mashud and Bismark Agogo, both aspiring presidential candidates have also been disqualified by the vetting committee, on grounds of not meeting the required CGPA threshold of 3.0 and non-performance during the vetting, respectively.
Story by Mohammed Muntala, a student radio personality with Radio Windy Bay 98.3 FM. He is a nominee in two categories – Best Radio Presenter and Best Student Journalist – in the impending 2018 NUGS Excellence Awards.
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