The NUS’ recently launched ‘Liar Liar’ campaign, estimated to have cost £40,00, has been criticised for being politically biased and a waste of money.
The campaign draws attention to the Liberal Democrat MPs who pledged not to increase tuition fees but then voted to triple them once in office.
A Facebook event has since been set up in response to the campaign urging people to troll the NUS by donating to the Liberal Democrats.
The creators of the event accuse the NUS of “being dominated by Labour students” and “aggressively pushing an agenda that hasn’t been endorsed by the many it is meant to represent”.
The event description states: “It’s conspicuously odd that no such campaign was reserved for Labour when they broke their promises on fees not once, but twice.”
Over 200 people are currently listed as ‘attending’ the event.
Rachel Edwards, Events Officer for the University of York Liberal Democrats, said: “This is just another case of
the NUS acting as a campaigning wing of the Labour Party, wasting £40,000 on a campaign which will do nothing to help students. The NUS recently voted not to have a trans* officer due to cost, but this campaign could pay for one twice.
“Until the NUS gives all students the chance to vote on its leadership and policy, it’ll remain unrepresentative, undemocratic and irrelevant to ordinary students.”
Naomi Barrow, a second-year student at the University of York, added: “I completely disagree with this campaign. Spending £40,000 on what is effectively a smear campaign targeted largely at one party is not something that represents students as a whole.
“They should be using the money to encourage students to vote and sharing the manifestos of all parties to help students have an informed vote, particularly as 18-24 year olds historically have a much lower turnout then other age groups.”
However, Stephen Harper, NUS Delegate, said: “I think it’s a good idea.
“Poor student voting turnout inevitably leads to our needs being overlooked so mobilising the student vote over such a hot issue should hopefully lead to positive change. It’s high time the NUS means more to students than a discount card.”
The NUS were contacted for a statement but has not yet responded.