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.
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.