Sunvoice

Fiji National University And Students Show The Voting Way

Fiji National University is leading the way in  current elections. Changing times are in the air at the growing national university. New vice-chancellor Professor Nigel Healey is at the forefront
15 Oct 2016 11:00
Fiji National University And Students Show  The Voting Way
Editorial

Fiji National University is leading the way in  current elections.

Changing times are in the air at the growing national university. New vice-chancellor Professor Nigel Healey is at the forefront with Supervisor of Elections Mohammed Saneem.

 

What’s up?

Student elections are an important part of the broader life of a university. Sadly, they have become amongst the least anticipated events in our university calendars.

Ask many university students and expect a blank look when asked about who their student association office bearers are, office location and so forth.

But university student bodies can be a powerful tool to empower students, effect change and enhance student campus life.

In the late 1970s, the University of the South Pacific students were definitely politically active. Students marched to protest against things happening in Rhodesia/Zimbabwe and nuclear tests. They not only protested at the Laucala Bay Campus, but also on the streets of Suva.

Such is the power that young people can harness to amplify their concerns. Such is the power they can also bring to a better student environment.

For FNU, getting the structure of its student body right from the start is vital. Elections are a key component. Getting the Fijian Elections Office on board to assist will ensure transparency and credibility.

The student body elections became the biggest polls for the Fijian Elections Office in a non-General Election year.

Here, the Fijian Elections Office will be able to demonstrate electoral best practices that are universally accepted.

This will be the first student body elections conducted under the newly-formed FNU Student Association umbrella launched on Thursday.

With the backing of Professor Healey, the student association can become a strong voice for students and at the same time provide them support services if managed well.

The onus is now on the students to make use of this platform. In particular, those who are keen to enter national politics.

This may be their only chance to experience and learn what elections and the responsibilities that come with it are all about.

A win-win situation at Fiji National University.
Feedback:  rosi.doviverata@fijisun.com.fj

 

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