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Dublin: 1°C Saturday 26 September 2020

USI blames subversion by 'small cohort' as DCU SU voids affiliation referendum

The DCU Students’ Union has declared a referendum re-affiliating to the Union of Students’ in Ireland null and void prompting criticism from USI president John Logue.

USI President John Logue
USI President John Logue
Image: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

THE PRESIDENT OF the Union of Students (USI) in Ireland has blamed a “small cohort” in DCU for the decision of the university’s students’ union to declare a recent referendum affiliating it to the USI “null and void”.

In an email to the student body, the president of DCU Students Union said this evening that the vote last month to re-affiliate with the USI was of questionable constitutionality, saying the SU’s executive had not held an information campaign or promoted the referendum.

Last month 768 students at DCU voted in favour of affiliating with USI, the national representative body for students, after a decade’s absence with 642 voting against the campaign.

However in an email to students this evening, DCU SU president Paul Doherty said:

The constitutionality has been challenged in relation to Article 9.1.6 which states that ‘The Students’ Union shall be responsible for the posting of the wording of proposed constitutional changes and the promotion of each referendum’.

“In the case of the USI referendum DCU SU Executive did not to hold an information campaign or promote the referendum. Therefore, as protector of the Constitution I must now declare the USI affiliation referendum null and void.”

However this evening’s decision to declare that result null and void has led to USI’s outgoing president John Logue insisting that his union will seek to “protect the democratic decision of DCU students”.

Logue said in a statement: “It is evident from the events that have transpired since the result of the referendum that a small cohort in DCU is intent on subverting the students’ decision by any means necessary.

“This has culminated in the highly questionable decision by DCU Students’ Union today to declare the referendum null and void. USI will now take any measures necessary to ensure that the constitutional right of DCU students to join and form a union is vindicated.”

Read: Roscommon native elected as new USI President

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Hugh O'Connell

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