IFUMSA GENERAL ELECTIONS: Is Time Really a Factor to Consider?

With four days left to the elections of the Obafemi Awolowo University Medical Students association, quite a few students have raised questions of whether there will be a ‘real’ election or just mere acceptance of candidates due to lack of competition?

Last year’s decision-making process remains one few Ifumsites want to relive, expecting nothing less. Of the ten executive positions, two candidates contested for Treasurer, Assistant General Secretary, Director of Socials and President. Candidates for every other executive position, including the Public Relations Officer, Financial secretary, General secretary, Director of sports, and welfare secretary, went unopposed.

On the contrary, this year, some positions currently have no one contesting for them, and those that have contestants lack the competition it deserves. Except for the Office of the AGS being vied for by two preclinical students, the Office of the President, PRO, Treasurer, Director of Sports, and General Secretary have only one candidate each, with every other executive position currently having no aspirant.

In an interview session with all aspirants and the current president Akinola Beloved, our correspondent gathered that most of them believe this year election lacks the excitement the last election brought.

When asked about what he felt about this year’s election, The President, Akinola Beloved, responded, saying,

“Compared to the previous year, it’s not fun. I mean, we were expecting a very stimulating and energetic election, but as things came to be this year, many of the offices are going unopposed. We have about four offices vacant. I’m not happy about that. I think that is probably because some of the classes are having exams. Maybe after the election, some people will develop interest and run.

“I’m also happy because, at least, we have people showing interest to serve the association. It is not always easy for people to add more responsibility to whatever they have on the ground.

“It is a thing of joy and quite encouraging when you see people willing to take the bold step and serve the association.”

Olajuyigbe Miracle, an aspirant for the Office of the Public Relations Officer, stated that he thinks there is a bit of apathy this year during his interview.

Also, a few days ago, a member of the Excelsiors class, Muyiwa Afolabi (Obrigado), pulled out of the race for the General secretary. In his interview, he stated that the period of the election is a delicate one for him. He said that he wanted a fairground as his opponent, Lawrence Ebenezar, isn’t writing exams and has more time to campaign than him. He believes a shift in the date will do a lot of good not just for him but also for the whole electoral process.

The last election saw this class produce three candidates for the general elections: the current General Secretary, Financial Secretary, and DOSocials. Also, the Eximus Grandis, who are currently writing their MB exams, produced three candidates for the Office of the President, DOSocials, and the current Welfare Secretary during the last elections.

However, both classes have struggled to produce two candidates and have no candidate declaring their intentions to run for the Students Representative Body. As apathetic as this may seem, it shows to some extent that examinations are standing in the way of some potential aspirants.

Furthermore, with the way things are and seem to be going, a few students feel there may be a low turnout of Ifumsites at the manifesto and during the voting process, as there is only one candidate for almost every position.

Indeed, all classes may not be free at the time of every election, but in time past, candidates have contested during exams, won elections, and still passed at the same time. However, this year seems to prove a different narrative that exams may be a hindering factor. And that may not be sending a good message to the younger Ifumsite as they may see this situation as usual.

Elections are like safe competitions where the winner is proven as the most capable of handling the affairs of an office. IFUMSA’s elections have consistently shown that, and this year’s didn’t have to be any less. We should and can only get better as an association.

Still, you are the voice of IFUMSA; what’s your take on this year’s election?

Reply Below…

Read here The General Elections TimeTable.

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