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Sanagavarapu and Bloom elected in uncontested presidential and Honi elections

Lara Sonnenschein and Matthew Forbes report.

Swapnik Sanagavarapu (Grassroots) has been provisionally elected as the President of the 93rd Students’ Representative Council and Bloom for Honi have been provisionally elected as Editors of Honi Soit.

As per SRC regulations, if the Electoral Officer has drawn up the ballot paper and the number of validly nominated candidates contesting a ballot is equal to the number of vacancies, such candidates will be duly elected.

Sanagavarapu is a current Councillor and General Executive Member, and served as Ethnocultural Officer last year. He was supported in his bid for the presidency by Switchroots, National Labor Students, Panda, Phoenix and Socialist Alternative. This is the first time that a Grassroots President has been elected for the second year in a row.

Sanagavarapu told Honi: “I’m extremely honoured to be provisionally elected as the President of the 93rd SRC. This year has been a time of terrible crisis and austerity. But as Thomas Sankara says, we must invent the future. Therefore, I promise that I will spend my tenure standing up for the rights of students and trying to invent a future in which education is accessible, equitable and universal.”

Today’s announcement represents a marked shift in what are often fiercely contested elections at the University of Sydney. It’s possibly the first time that both the Presidential and Honi Soit editor elections have gone uncontested.

The Bloom for Honi ticket includes: Shania O’Brien, Vivienne Guo, Claire Ollivain, Jeffrey Khoo, Deaundre Espejo, Marlow Hurst, Juliette Marchant, Max Shanahan, Alice Trenoweth-Cresswell and Will Solomon. All are current Honi reporters. The ticket was set to be managed by Christian Holman, who was previously looking to contest Bloom, and Max Vishney.

Whilst Claire Ollivain (Grassroots) is the only current member of a faction on the ticket, Bloom is quite clearly a progressive ticket. Vivienne Guo (ex-Grassroots) currently serves as co-Women’s Officer, and manager Max Vishney was previously a Switch for SRC candidate.

The Sydney University Law Society (SULS) has played something of a role in the ticket as well. Jeffrey Khoo, who managed Fit for Honi’s campaign last year, previously served as a society executive and managed the campaign for Pop for SULS last year. Deaundre Espejo and Max Vishney are both currently on the executive, serving as Vice President (Social Justice) and Equity Officer respectively.

Bloom told Honi: “We’re all buzzing for the year ahead of us! Thank you to our managers Max Vishney and Christian Holman; though our time together was brief, we have valued your commitment and input, and wish you the best of luck in future endeavours. Our condolences to our non-existent opponents, we couldn’t have done this without you. We’re keen to meet our writers, seek out new voices, and continue the long, radical history of Honi Soit.”

Elections for the 7 delegates to the National Union of Students and 35 councillors for the 93rd SRC will still be held during the planned voting period from Tuesday 29 September to Thursday 1 October.