Article by Emelia Motsai and Ray Mahlaka. Gallery by Mfuneko Toyana
The results of the 2013 SRC elections were announced today at the Wits Great Hall piazza.
Newcomers Project W got almost half the seats on the SRC. Last year PYA won 14 of the 15 seats, losing only one seat to an independent candidate.
In 2011 they won all the seats on the SRC. The percentage of students who voted in this year was 24%, a 3.5% increase from last year.
Reactions from organisations
While the PYA narrowly maintains its majority on the SRC, with only eight seats, their shock was evident.
“They got seven seats,” said current SRC external Joy Phiri (@Joy_Phiri) who is a PYA member right after the results were announced.
Project W’s Jamie Mighti (@thenextbarack) said the votes reflected what students wanted.
“The students have voted, we’ve introduced democracy and excitement around politics in the university,” said Mighti.
When his name was announced in eighth position Mighti walked across the Great Hall stairs to where PYA members were standing and mocked them. They booed him in response.
[pullquote]“The students have voted, we’ve introduced democracy and excitement around politics in the university”[/pullquote]
PYA’s Shafee Verachia (@ShafMysta) the incumbent SRC academic officer got most of the votes. He garnered 2967 votes, 3.6 % of the total votes. PYA supporters cheered loudly when this was announced.
“I’m quite happy, PYA will pride its self in serving students,” said Verachia.
None of the Democratic Alliance Student Organisation (Daso) candidates made it in to the top 15, the first of their candidates came in at number 31 with 945 votes.
“We gave up half way through,” said Daso’s Dikeledi Selowa (@DK_Selowa) who was visibly upset.
University registar Kirti Menon made the announcement of the results. Menon said the results were fair and free and she congratulated all the candidates, even those who did not make it.
Students react to results
Students who were interviewed by Wits Vuvuzela did not seem to have a problem with the results.
“Project W will sharpen the PYA. We should be celebrating, we have sound leaders. I’m happy with the SRC results said,” Mcebo Sisulu.
Another student said he would have liked to see a 100% PYA SRC but he was ok with the results: “it’s a wake-up call [for PYA], as long as there is representation on both sides.”
Verachia said he was happy that there was more diversity in the SRC: “We will work hard with Project W to serve students.”
Mighti also said a functional SRC was possible even if it was run by Project W and PYA members. “It won’t be broken, it will work,” he said. The New SRC will begin its term on November 1.
The Wits SRC 2013/2014
1. Shafee Verachia – PYA
2. Angeliki Vidalis – PYA
3. Nelson Maunatlala – PYA
4. Jabulile Mabuza – Project W
5. Jarred Hart – Project W
6. Kay Mlaba – Project W
7. Ethan Genende – Project W
8. Jamie Mighti – Project W
9. Michlene Mongae – PYA
10. Gerry Comninos – Project W
11. Paul Ndiweni – PYA
12. Avigal Cutler – Project W
13. Kabelo Ngwenya – PYA
14. Sarah Mokwebo – PYA
15. Shoki Masha – PYA