Just three votes short of winning NUS President

Submitted by martin on 4 April, 2003 - 12:04

Elections for the NUS Executive also showed a resurgence of the left. Kat Fletcher of the Campaign for Free Education and Workers' Liberty, standing on the united left Education Not War slate, came within three votes of winning the presidential election. Overall, the Campaign for Free Education got four people elected to the Executive: Laura Brickwood, Education Not War candidate for vice-president Further Education Union Development; and Kat Fletcher, Alan Clarke (also Workers' Liberty) and John Dickenson-Lilley as part-time Exec members.
Gains for left at NUS Conference
Students say "No to war, no to Saddam"

By Sacha Ismail

The National Union of Students conference in Blackpool, from 31 March to 3 April, has voted for "no to war, no to Saddam Hussein". Students have set themselves firmly against the US/UK war in Iraq, on the basis of solidarity with the peoples of Iraq, and, therefore, equal opposition to Saddam Hussein's predatory dictatorship.
Tory speakers calling for students to "back our boys at the front" got a lot of cheering, but lost the debate and the vote.
The conference has also voted by a large majority to reject means-testing in higher education. Back in the late 1990s, the Labour Students leadership helped the Blair government push through university fees and the abolition of student grants. Bit by bit, the Blairite students have been pushed back through the work of the Campaign for Free Education. Now the reality of top-up fees has hit home. The job in the next year will be to translate the new NUS policy into active campaigning.
The elections for the NUS Executive also showed a resurgence of the left. Kat Fletcher of the Campaign for Free Education and Workers' Liberty, standing on the united left Education Not War slate, came within three votes of winning the presidential election. Overall, the Campaign for Free Education got four people elected to the Executive: Laura Brickwood, Education Not War candidate for vice-president Further Education Union Development; and Kat Fletcher, Alan Clarke (also Workers' Liberty) and John Dickenson-Lilley as part-time Exec members.
The Campaign for Free Education will be back next year to continue the job of transforming NUS from a bureaucratic student-services outfit into a democratic campaigning organisation which mobilises students to fight for their rights alongside the labour movement.

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