120 Views
2 Comments

BNP have 'no confidence' union president

Over 1000 students at Staffordshire University as well as local BNP members have lobbied for a vote of no confidence in Staffordshire Student Union President Assed Baig. The move comes after Baig created a link on the University’s website which allowed users to access a list of British National Party (BNP) members living in the local Staffordshire area.

The list included not only the names but also the postcodes of the BNP members’ current addresses. According to the Union’s constitution, the vote against Baig would have to constitute a two-thirds majority in order for him to be ousted from his position.

Baig came under fierce criticism after the publication of the list. A councillor for the BNP, Michael Coleman, is believed to have been the one to initiate the response to the website link by reporting the incident to local police. It has been argued that the revelation of BNP members in such a list is a violation of privacy laws. Another prominent party member and BNP representative on the Stoke-On-Trent City Council, Alby Walker, has also denounced Assed Baig’s actions.

Walker has made a request to the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Christine King, that Baig be suspended forthwith from Staffordshire University. Walker suggested that the high number of students who disagree with Baig was an indication of the wrongfulness of his actions. In reference to Baig he said: “I believe he is a dangerous person to have around and the university would be better without him.”

Nonetheless students have rallied  to support Baig. A facebook group ‘Defend Staffordshire University Students Union from BNP attacks’ has over 600 members and is supported by ‘Unite Against Fascism’ and ‘Love Music Hate Racism’.

Baig has responded to his critics with equal defiance, and has implied that he believes that the particular force of this campaign to stifle him was motivated at least in part by his Muslim religious beliefs. According to local paper The Sentinel, Baig was reported as saying, “I think this criticism from the BNP is rich. They seem to be up in arms about the website link, but if they’ve got nothing to hide then what is the issue?” He has also stated his personal belief that it is the BNP who is primarily responsible for the establishment of a Facebook group criticising and that most of his fellow students will continue to support him.

Controversies such as this one seem to embody the wider debate about the way that democratic bodies should handle Far-Right political parties. Is democracy best served by treating all political opinions, however abhorrent some may find them, with equal respect? Or should the representatives in our society, be they government or universities, take a firm stand against the politics of those extremist parties which are perceived as having the potential to threaten democracy itself? Whichever view one takes, it would seem that most people would certainly agree that it would be an undesirable development indeed if the BNP were ultimately to benefit politically from this incident.

Get the best viral stories straight into your inbox!

Don't worry, we don't spam

2 Comments

  1. ” most people would certainly agree that it would be an undesirable development indeed if the BNP were ultimately to benefit politically from this incident”

    Then don’t let them. Supporting Baig wouold allow the BNP space to play the victim. As far as possible they should be frozen out of this debate and it should be made a privacy issue.

    Don’t allow the BNP to be the lead voice attacking Baig. UAF Love music and other anti-facist groups should come out and say though the BNP has dispicable opinions we can defeat them through argument and peaceful campaigns. What Baig did was ilegal and unaceptable intended to intimidate those he disagreed with.

    We fight against facism because we are a nation of laws and civil rights one of which is the right to privacy. Another is due prosess let’s not cloud this issue politically Baig broke the law this should be investigated.

    Imagine the president of another union was a BNP member and illegaly put up stolen information the names and adresses of a left wing organisation say UAF in the hopes of creating a violent backlash. What would then be our response

    Reply
  2. The reason why Staffs Uni students started the facebook group against Baig, and the reasons that a lot (and I mean literally everyone who I’ve heard comment) called for a vote of no confidence. The reason that the group was made was because Baig was using union money and his time spent there (paid by the University) on political campaigns unrelated to the students.

    After several attempts to get the message across that we don’t want politics unrelated to the Students’ Union shoved down our throats–(constant flyering and campaigning, graffiti on university walls, posters of influential radical left-wing figures put up in the students space which weren’t allowed to be pulled down) action and rallying was finally taken to get the point heard.

    Baig abused and neglected his position. He then pulled out the race card when questioned, and made it known through (hundreds of) posters that if people voted against him, they were racist. I’m pretty sure this pissed off just about everyone, the racist fascist BNP and the students, – and i know for a fact –including students from east asia and black students.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Join the Badger Team

Apply today!

Latest Posts

Union obliterates the debate – unwritten requirement used to shut down free speech debate
Campus News
312 views1
Campus News
312 views1

Union obliterates the debate – unwritten requirement used to shut down free speech debate

Jordan Wright - April 27, 2018

Student society Liberate the Debate’s most recent event was cancelled over a lack of compliance with the Students' Union's (USSU) requirement for a neutral chair - a…

UCU Launch Petition to End the ‘Hostile Environment’ at Sussex
Campus News
20 views
Campus News
20 views

UCU Launch Petition to End the ‘Hostile Environment’ at Sussex

Billie-Jean Johnson - May 26, 2018

The Sussex branch of the University and College Union (UCU) has launched a petition calling for Vice-Chancellor Adam Tickell to end the 'hostile environment' at Sussex. The…

Arts
25 views

Shakespeare in the sun – The Tempest preview

Georgia Grace - May 24, 2018

In a world of dystopian King Lears and female Hamlets, Shakespeare’s classics are constantly being reimagined for the modern day. There’s something oddly refreshing then about the…

Review: Nick Cave Double Bill at The Old Market (TOM’s Film Club)
Arts
51 views
Arts
51 views

Review: Nick Cave Double Bill at The Old Market (TOM’s Film Club)

Sophie Coppenhall - May 23, 2018

What a phenomenal contrast these two films present when watched side-by-side. In essence, together they are capable of tracing inner and outer metamorphoses of their subjects. The…

Dollywould at The Old Market preview
Arts
45 views
Arts
45 views

Dollywould at The Old Market preview

Alex Hutson - May 22, 2018

From the 22nd May - 25th May 2018 DollyWould will be showing at The Old Market. An exciting new show, presented by Sh!t Theatre, who won the…

Exhibition: Io-sono Fedilouu
Artist Focus
105 views
Artist Focus
105 views

Exhibition: Io-sono Fedilouu

Ricardo Reverón Blanco - May 16, 2018

Last week artist Fedilou made her debut exhibition in the downstairs space of Morelli Zorelli, a quaint vegan Italian restaurant in Hove, featuring a collection of intimate…

Interview with Philosophy faculty and COGS director Ron Chrisley
Interview
74 views
Interview
74 views

Interview with Philosophy faculty and COGS director Ron Chrisley

Nikolaos Manesis - May 15, 2018

Ron Chrisley is a Reader in Philosophy, on the faculty of the Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science, and is the director of COGS (Centre for Cognitive Science).…

Adam review
Arts
130 views
Arts
130 views

Adam review

Ketan Jha - May 13, 2018

If you have been a stranger to the stage this spring and decide to see one contemporary show, let it be Adam. This reviewer went in entirely…

Brighton Fringe Preview: Nick Cave Double Bill at The Old Market (TOM’s Film Club)
Arts
130 views
Arts
130 views

Brighton Fringe Preview: Nick Cave Double Bill at The Old Market (TOM’s Film Club)

Sophie Coppenhall - May 13, 2018

In celebration of iconic Brighton local, legendary alt-rock musician (and episodic actor) Nick Cave, TOM’s Film Club are hosting a double-bill screening of his films at The…

Whimsical fairy-tale meets class war – Standard: Elite review
Arts
150 views
Arts
150 views

Whimsical fairy-tale meets class war – Standard: Elite review

Georgia Grace - May 11, 2018

Meta-theatricality and interactivity are becoming all the more vogue in contemporary theatre, and in a world where the arts are becoming increasingly open and democratised, I find…

A Year of Art Society: The Best Picks
Artist Focus
125 views
Artist Focus
125 views

A Year of Art Society: The Best Picks

Alex Leissle - May 9, 2018

  [gallery type="slideshow" ids="35385,35386,35387,35388,35389,35390,35391,35392,35393,35394,35395,35396,35397,35398,35399,35400,35401,35402,35403,35404,35405,35406,35407,35408,35409,35410,35411"]

More Brit(ish) than ever: A review of Afua Hirsch at Brighton Festival
Books
105 views
Books
105 views

More Brit(ish) than ever: A review of Afua Hirsch at Brighton Festival

William Singh - May 9, 2018

Afua Hirsch’s 2018 book - part memoir, part polemic - provokes mixed feelings. So too did her discussion of the topic at this year’s Brighton Festival. Don’t…

Ethnic-bioweapons: between conspiracy and reality
Science
140 views
Science
140 views

Ethnic-bioweapons: between conspiracy and reality

Luke Richards - May 8, 2018

Bioweapons exist, while ethnic-bioweapons are whispered conspiracies. Pandemics can fairly hazardous to human life, the 1918 Flu Pandemic killed 20-50 million people. A man made pandemic could…

Breaking: Spring referenda results announced
News
191 views
News
191 views

Breaking: Spring referenda results announced

Jessica Hubbard - May 4, 2018

Students have voted to support the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement, reject Prevent and adopt new Gender Equality policies. Results for the Students' Union referenda were…

Why I’m Jewish AND I support BDS
Comment
181 views
Comment
181 views

Why I’m Jewish AND I support BDS

Sarah McIntosh - May 2, 2018

The idea of a land where my religious identity is welcomed and where I feel safe to be myself and live in peace is a beautiful idea…

Student research happening at Sussex
Features
163 views
Features
163 views

Student research happening at Sussex

Nikolaos Manesis - May 1, 2018

(Image source: Flickr, Pixabay, Wikipedia) Another academic year is coming to a close and with it, the last edition of The Badger. To celebrate our last science…

Sussex Festival cancelled
Campus News
226 views
Campus News
226 views

Sussex Festival cancelled

Jordan Wright - April 30, 2018

The Students’ Union have cancelled their highly anticipated end-of-term event Sussex Festival: Desert Island Disco, which was due to begin on Saturday May 12th. The Students’ Union…

Students’ Union President Gustafsson and Liberate the Debate respond to the cancelled event
Comment
244 views
Comment
244 views

Students’ Union President Gustafsson and Liberate the Debate respond to the cancelled event

Jordan Wright - April 27, 2018

These comment pieces represent the opinions of both the Students' Union and Liberate the Debate with regards to the  recent cancellation of the Society's freedom of speech…

Artist Focus: Rory Hinshelwood
Artist Focus
157 views
Artist Focus
157 views

Artist Focus: Rory Hinshelwood

Louisa Hunt - April 25, 2018

Rory Hinshelwood studies Zoology with Spanish at Sussex. His brand is called Poplar St., at the moment the brand sell embroidered high-quality t-shirts. Rory works mostly in graphics…

Artist Focus: Maayan Cohen
Artist Focus
115 views
Artist Focus
115 views

Artist Focus: Maayan Cohen

Emma Phillips - April 24, 2018

The Badger spoke with Sussex University’s Maayan Cohen about her creative workshop, ‘Bits and Pieces.’ Can you tell us a bit about Bits and Pieces- what’s the…