BDS and drug policy referenda will be reran

Brendan Fernando Kelly Palenque

Image Credit: DCU Students' Union

The Palestinian solidarity and sustainable drug policy referenda will be rerun before the end of this semester.

The Class Representative Council (CRC) voted to not accept the results of the referenda. Polls had closed for both referenda an hour earlier than intended.

Before that vote took place, the CRC had to decide whether to accept the results of the referenda individually or separately. The CRC voted for together, but there was some opposition.

Cormac Ó’Floinn wanted to vote on the referenda separately. He said: “All the people that voted [in the original referenda] and their opinions are invalid because we decided to rerun the referendum.”

The Palestinian referendum received 1,764 votes, while the drug one received 1,590. In order for a referendum to be considered valid, it must receive at least 1,695 votes.

Chairperson of the Students for Sustainable Drug Policy society said he was disappointed with the position taken. He said: “We worked very hard to ensure this referendum took place during SU elections because it has the highest level of engagement for any elections throughout the year.”

Amy Collins, chairperson of Ógra Shinn Féin also described the CRC’s vote as upsetting. She said: “The SJP [Students for Justice in Palestine society] team worked so hard for the past year organising events and campaigning and it is disappointing to now find out that although we reached quorum, it will all have to be done again.”

The CRC also voted in favour of holding a referendum on whether smoke-free zones should be established in DCU. The referendum will take place along with the other two that are being re-run.

In a Facebook post, SJP said: “We’re outraged that CRC and the SU have decided to scrap the results of our recent referendum on supporting Palestine.” They added: “We’re calling on the SU [Students’ Union] and on CRC to reconsider and release the results of the original referendum.”

Brendan Fernando Kelly Palenque

Image Credit: DCU Student’s Union