Tim Ngwena to run for second term

Off The Record can exclusively reveal that YUSU President Tim Ngwena is reportedly seeking a second term at the top of the Union tree, according to several sources within YUSU.

If my basic YUSU history is up to scratch, Tim – who beat Tom Langrish by 1308 to 1190 votes last year – would be the first YUSU President to serve two terms if he won in March.

I would assume Tim’s pursuing a second term in order to bolster his CV. Most people Off The Record spoke to tonight guessed that was it – I certainly haven’t seen him shown any real desire to re-run thus far, and by all accounts I don’t think he’s hugely in love with the job.

Incumbents running for second terms is a rather new phenomenon. Matt Burton ran in 2008 and won, though his stewardship of the Courtyard Project meant many potential challengers chose to run for other positions instead. Rory Shanks tried to follow suit in 2009, but failed against a far more populist candidate in Rhianna Kinchin, and in my opinion Tim would need to ignore the vast majority of his YUSU duties during campaign fortnight (something Rory honourably did not do) to beat a similar challenge.

Charlie Leyland also ran in 2009 for a second term, won with flying colours, and if she could run this year, I’m sure she’d prove victorious again. John Major put paid to that.

One thing is for sure – the other candidates lining up for a run at the Presidency will be taking note. David Levene, Chair of YUSU Council and I think – prior to Tim’s potential candidacy – the most qualified of those interested, has been clear of his intentions for months now, but many think he wants a desk in the office more than he wants the President’s job – so might settle for something else if he’s unwilling to take on an incumbent. Academic Officer is most likely.

Then there’s Matthew Freckleton, who has been cagey about people knowing of his intentions, but would certainly benefit from enhancing his exposure to the general campus. One assumes he’ll run regardless of Tim, however. I hear he has a video campaign set up already.

Ollie Hutchings and Roberto Powell, Alcuin and Halifax Chairs respectively, are yet to make concrete decisions, if most sources are to be believed, though of the two Powell is perhaps most likely to run at the moment. Hutchings has been vocal with his criticism of Uni and Union bureaucracy, and one wonders if he could stomach 12 months in the job. My bet is that he’ll run if he thinks the alternatives aren’t up to scratch.

And Dan Hunter – a name that’s been bandied about by some – is apparently considering a run as a joke candidate, to complete the pack thus far.

Please do let me know if I’ve missed anyone.

[email protected]

The opinions expressed above are not representative of either those of Nouse, or of YUSU. They are the speculations and personal views of the author who is not a member of the editorial team, and should be treated as such.


  1. I believe YUSU’s constitution actually prevented Sabbatical Officers from running for a second term before it was changed circa 2005/6 – which is why Matt was the first in recent memory to do it.

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  2. 26 Jan ’10 at 3:49 am

    Luke Brownbridge

    Dan Hunter a joke candidate? The only joke is David Levene.

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  3. 26 Jan ’10 at 8:31 am

    James Dorward

    Frecks has been at the centre of student enterprise for the past 2/half years and has done more for building York into the country’s leading enterprise centre than any other student!


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  4. Are people allowed to publish articles advertising candidacy at this time? I’m fairly sure it led to penalisation in the past..?

    And you missed Zeenat :P

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  5. 26 Jan ’10 at 10:32 am

    Tobias Ziegler

    Yup, it was changed in the 05/06 academic year, making the Croker et. al sab team the first that could have re-ran (the year before Burton I).

    I really don’t understand why potential 2 year sabs generate such opposition in York. It would be a good thing for YUSU to have a 2nd year President, especially at a time when it is seriously thinking about its strategic direction over the next few years.

    I really dislike Foy’s attempts to paint Tim as simply a CV builder who ”would need to ignore the vast majority of his YUSU duties during campaign fortnight”.

    Tim’s ability to juggle a large number of commitments (particularly over the campaign period) is what earned him a great deal of respect & votes in his campaign last year. Why should it be any different now?

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  6. 26 Jan ’10 at 10:39 am

    Inspector Morse

    I hope Roberto isn’t hoping to run with this kind of dirt under his fingernails.


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  7. I am not sure that it is accurate to claim that Freckelton has been ‘at the centre of student enterprise for the past 2 and a half years’, when his first year did little, if not nothing, to contribute to the university.

    Comment edited by a moderator

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  8. 26 Jan ’10 at 1:20 pm

    Chief Inspector Barnaby

    I’m not entirely sure if accusations of racism (see above) should be allowed through moderation for a start!

    I’ve met Freckelton several times over the past three years and have heard from several groups that he has indeed been involved with numerous campus events, initiatives and campaigns. Maybe “Anon” just never met the guy? Didn’t he run for Vice Chair Langwith JCRC in his first year? Did fairly well in the Apprentice Competition? etc etc. Not exactly uninvolved then is he?

    Also to “~J” the article that has been posted above (Younoodle?) isn’t exactly an argument but a statement of fact with no reference to him standing (if he does indeed choose to) so I think to penalise him because of what someone else posted (probably just googled his name) seems unfair.

    Chief Inspector Barnaby

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  9. 26 Jan ’10 at 2:32 pm

    Read the rules Foy

    Posting articles such as this surely counts as early campaigning which is AGAINST THE RULES!

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  10. 26 Jan ’10 at 2:49 pm

    Tobias Ziegler

    I thought last year Nouse, Vision & the Yorker produced quite a few ‘rumour’ articles which were not breaking the rules.

    The only pre-campaign article removed was when Tim ‘confirmed’ his intention to run, no longer making it a rumour.

    TBH, the media should be allowed to produce articles like this as it slowly starts to increase interest in elections = good.

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  11. Oi Toby,

    Can’t help noticing that you spend a lot of time occupied with Nouse when you’ve obviously got Huck and Molly to look after. Having been so influential in running the White House for eight years, shouldn’t you find something more useful to do with your time than perusing this website?

    Your ex-wife


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  12. For whom am I campaigning, ‘Read the rules Foy’?

    Also, to which rules should I be adhering? Until the official Notice of Election is posted, which I believe is Week 6, surely none exist.

    Thanks for the feedback.

    I wait with trepidation for the Returning Officer(-to be) to pass judgement on this blog’s existence. Will YUSU waft its wand of power in my general direction?

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  13. “Hutchings, placing personality ahead of policies in his priorities…”

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  14. 27 Jan ’10 at 1:29 am

    Oliver James Hutchings

    I think that, in the interests of fairness, it should be noted that the ‘dirt’ under Roberto’s fingernails, eventually turned out not to be some sort of financial conspiracy, but rather an attempt to overcome the odd layout of Halifax and promote college spirit. It’s only a minor detail, but sometimes the press misses these things.

    Secondly, just in defense of myself when placed out of context “Hutchings, placing personality ahead of policies in his priorities…”
    definitely appears to be a damming indictment of my ability to be a successful leader (should it come to that). However it is once again worth noting that the ‘priorities’ cited were infact my campaigning priorities, not my priorities as chair. That is to say that Sam Daniels and I had essentially homogenous policies, which isn’t suprising given the size of Alcuin and the amount of issues facing the college. So, given the nature of being Chair is somewhat democratic, it involves fostering the ideas of your committee not dictating an arbitarirly differant set of policies, so to campaign on the basis of a rigid set of policies felt at odds with the nature of the job.

    Just thought I’d drop that into the mix.

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  15. 27 Jan ’10 at 2:02 am

    Oliver James Hutchings

    Also, I want to apologise for the terrible english displayed above, I’d love to say it’s sleep deprivation, so I will.

    ‘Minor’ Edit; When campaigning Sam Daniels and I had essentially homogenous policies, which isn’t suprising given the threats posed to Alcuin at the time. So, given that Chair is meant to be somewhat democratic position, involving fostering the ideas of your committee as opposed to merely dictating an arbitarirly differentiated set of policies, campaigning on the basis of a rigid set of policies felt at odds with the nature of the job. Emphasising that I had the charecter traits necessary to be an effective leader (personality) seemed to be an important part of campaigning, especially when the membership of the college didn’t know who I was for the most part.

    I don’t think all that was quite captured in the original article and at the time it didn’t seem to matter much, but it seemed worthwhile clarifying it now.

    Thats a bit better, maybe.


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  16. 27 Jan ’10 at 2:37 pm

    Hercule Poirot

    The mud slinging, smear campaigns and self praise from certain parties on here is both grotesque and garishly obvious. I commend those potential future candidates who have simply defended themselves and whos campaign teams and selves have not resorted to this kind of behaviour, especially given campaigning has not technically begun. I hope other readers of these comments can see straight through the filth and self glorification that has been written to the types of people and their tactics who have written these posts. Oh, and just to nit pick, according to my research Matthew Freckelton did not run for anything in his JCRC until second year, and furthermore, and rather coincidently, ran with James Dorward, see comment above. In the interest of balancing this section I leave you with this rather hipocritical link that I have been made aware of by individuals who agree with my views. Apparently Matt was a cameraman during first year: http://www.facebook.com/video/?oid=40028381801

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  17. 27 Jan ’10 at 10:47 pm

    Ngwena Observer

    What, exactly, has Tim achieved this year that makes him want to run again? I must have missed something.

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  18. 27 Jan ’10 at 11:07 pm

    Oliver James Hutchings

    Since, I was the only one to post under my own name I’m going to assume the above ‘self-glorification’ comment was directed at me and merely apologise if that’s how it was taken. My intention was to get people to contextualise the journalism, in both mine and Roberto’s case not to stake an early claim in a race I am still unsure of.

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  19. http://tinyurl.com/millerobama

    Enuf said. Change we can believe in!

    Miller 4 Prez 2010!!

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  20. 28 Jan ’10 at 8:01 pm

    Lucy Alexander

    Lol, Tim hasn’t achieved anything EXTRAORDINARY….but then who has? The guy in gallery every week? The guy in the libarary every week? Or the guy in the courtyard every week? We just want Tim again because we like him. He’s a nice guy, much better than that pirate.


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  21. 29 Jan ’10 at 11:35 am


    Probably, arrrrgghhhh…..

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  22. 29 Jan ’10 at 4:20 pm


    Who would you rather have, somebody who’s ‘nicer than the pirate guy’, or somebody who actually gets stuff done?

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  23. 29 Jan ’10 at 4:31 pm

    Ngwena Observer

    No ‘Lucy Alexander’ in the university directory, could this be the pres himself?

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  24. policy 1st, then nice guys 2nd please! I want a pres that gets stuff done and makes real changes that will effect us! :)

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  25. I think the comments by “Hercule Poirot” are slightly unjustified given the nature of Hutchings’ responses to the attack on him. In my opinion it was perfectly right for Oliver to defend himself against a claim, which (if he runs for President) would be a smear on his campaign and was an attack on his abilities to lead Alcuin as JCRC chair, and perhaps later York University as President. Yes, he did run with similar policies to the other candidates, but as he stated, considering the period Alcuin was in at the time, certain things were at the top of every candidate’s “to do” list notably B-Henrys and student welfare. If a candidate had ignored these for the sake of being “original” then they would not have had the college’s best interests at heart, something I felt Oliver always has.

    So if all the candidates for President have similar policies then who cares, I am just going to vote for the one who I think is more likely to be successful in implementing those policies. Tim Ngwena I think has gone part-way in fulfilling his election promises, but not enough to make me vote for him again (if he does run for a second term). In fact, voting for YUSU officers now seems to be a case of trying to decipher the smoke and mirrors, especially with some candidates *cough* Lewis Bretts *cough*, who have hardly delivered on any of the policies they claimed to implement and just seem to hang around waiting for the term to be over so they can whack it on the CV and head out in to the world with another notch on their belt.

    In fact, I would go as far as to say that the large majority of YUSU officers at this current moment (those who are eligible) should not think about running again for the good of the University. I want to have a look at some fresh candidates who could really get the job done.

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  26. Lucy Alexander says:

    – You should have seen the other candidates.

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  27. @ Read the Rules Foy

    The trouble with last year’s article confirming Tim’s candidacy wasn’t that Nouse said he was running, it was that the whole thing read like an advert for his presidency. It didn’t give coverage to other candidates and was just a flattering vanity-piece. Very different to this article which just speculates about who might run.

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  28. if Steve Miller does run, he would humiliate that zany Oliver Hutchings. Miller’s everything Hutchings wishes he was. and more. a real man, not one relying on crazy fashion sense, silly hats and lense-less spectacles to get noticed.

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  29. 31 Jan ’10 at 3:54 am

    Oliver James Hutchings

    You forgot to mention that he kicked my ass in York Come Dancing too!

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  30. Yawn! This Miller stuff is getting tiring now. Wake me up when Miller has finally left this campus…oh wait that may never happen!

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  31. J Rivers = Ollie Hutchins?

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  32. that’s not even funny J.Rivers??
    Get over yourself. There is NOTHING tiring about Steve Miller.
    If you have not got anything supportive to say about him, then please be quiet.

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  33. 31 Jan ’10 at 12:06 pm

    Joan Rivers must die.

    Joan, you’re clearly a feminist man-hater….

    I was disgusted by your book “Men Are Stupid . . . And They Like Big Boobs: A Woman’s Guide to Beauty Through Plastic Surgery”.

    Stop taking your anger out on male campus bignames like Steve.

    Steve FTW.

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  34. 1 Feb ’10 at 12:50 am

    Oliver James Hutchings

    ‘Badgers’, it may very well be this ‘Ollie Hutchins’ charecter who is posting as ‘J Rivers’, whoe’r ‘Ollie Hutchins’ may be. If you’re going to accuse a man of being a professional bellend then at least consider spelling his name right. Not only do I make the conscious decision to always post under my own name (what’s to hide?) but I also actually like Steve Miller (even if he does make me look like a little girl).

    I realise I put myself into this position by reading and commenting on this blog, but that is often a side effect of caring about student politics. You’ll have to take it on faith that I’m not an actual cunt though, as hard as that may be to believe at times.

    You can’t please all of the people all of the time and all that lark, but if you remain anonymous ‘you’ can’t be said to have done anything worthwhile atall.

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  35. 1 Feb ’10 at 10:29 am

    freshblood needed

    in response to ASKAlcuinite

    i totally agree with you mate, we need new people, we new ideas and a determination and to get on with the job and make real changes. I want someone with a proven track record on ‘getting the job done’.

    no more empty premisses instead we need sound, common sense policy that can be achieved!

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  36. Ngwena as the incumbent officer has the hardest job… not only has he got to prove and justify his achievements/progress for this year but also show how he’s going to improve on them and offer us more than what he had last year. The fact that the majority of the comments and the article are focused on him highlights that the spotlight is on him and that takes some heat of the other candidates.

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  37. 2 Feb ’10 at 2:56 pm


    @ Mc Hammer – Unfortunately the best way to judge a candidate is on their previous experience. When going for a job, employers (in this case the student body) look at how you would fare in your new position and try to judge how well you could take on the task of being President, based on previous experience.

    Ngwena has it tough in this sense because there is no estimation by the student body of how he would act as President, we have had the opportunity to see him in the role for a year. Therefore, he is being judged on this, which, to be honest, I think is fair enough. It would be foolish to dismiss his last year as President and think of him as a “fresh candidate” for the presidency to make it fair to the other candidates. When the race is revealed, however, I am sure that the other candidates will too be judged on their previous experiences around campus.

    @ Freshblood needed – As long as it is not a pirate or someone who runs on a gimmick then I think “fresh candidates” are required who have enough previous experience to suggest they can get the job done. Seriously, drop the gimmicks, and get some bloody work done!

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  38. voter apathy.

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  39. 2 Feb ’10 at 10:16 pm

    Dissent is the highest form of patriotism

    “Ngwena as the incumbent officer has the hardest job … to prove and justify his achievements/progress for this year”

    Which will be especially hard for Tim in particular, LOL.

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