As reported in last week’s edition of The Badger, students at Bangor University were to hold a referendum on Thursday 16 October on whether to support the Campaign to Defeat Fees (CDF).
Socialist students at the University had been campaigning for their Union to join the CDF, with the aim of abolishing tuition fees, a move which was met with criticism from both the NUS and the NUS Wales for being “unrealistic”.
However, despite the fact that an alleged 300 socialist students called the referendum, voting turn-out was disappointing. 271 students voted “Yes” in the motion and 104 voted “No”. Thus, victory for those in favour of joining the CDF, but by no means an overwhelming one, with the mysterious absence of the votes of 29 supposed hard-core fee-fighters.
Ben Gray, President of the NUS Wales, commented on the result: “Any result that sees the percentage increments so closely matched to the actual numbers clearly points to a lack of engagement and a rather drab voting outcome.”
Nevertheless, in response to the fact that the “Yes” vote was, indeed, triumphant, he stated ‘I look forward to hearing Bangor Students’ Union bringing this view to our democratic structures so we can have a proper fees debate at spring conference.’