UWI Students Guild president Fallon Lutchmansingh is congratulated
by a student after she received her instrument of appointment.
Amidst the controversy surrounding the UWI Students
Guild elections, newly-elected president Fallon Lutchmansingh
and the other members of the UWI Unity team were installed
yesterday as the new guild council.
They were given the green light late Monday evening to proceed,
after meeting with deputy campus principal Gurmohan Kochhar,
who told them there were no changes after the ballot recount
had been done on Sunday.
The instruments of appointment were handed out by guest speaker
Dr Kenneth Niles, before a packed audience and in the presence
of only one outgoing guild council member.
The ceremony began with a minutes silence for Belize-born
student Rishi Akani Cummings, who it is believed committed
suicide on Monday by jumping off the roof of the Natural Sciences
Addressing the students and administration members, Kochhar
urged the new guild to work closely with the administration
and reach out to students such as Cummings, before it was
the students and not yourselves, Kochhar said.
He said too many past guilds were only interested in helping
hope the future guild is better than the past one, he
Lutchmansingh, in her feature address, told the new guild,
Let us be officers who serve the students, not ourselves.
Referring to Cummings, she said all students should do their
part in reaching out to the lonely, quiet person in the classroom
who had problems, and make a difference in that persons
Lutchmansingh thanked the past guild for the mistakes they
made, mistakes which, she said, the new guild would learn
have shown us the direction in which we have to go,
are here as a union, not a government.
Niles gave a humorous, yet powerful speech.
kind of students may have jumped over yesterday? he
would have influenced him?
Niles said it was too late to be pointing fingers and blaming
He said such people might look strong, but could not exist
Niles said if someone had reached out to him, Cummings might
have still been alive today.
should not be irie, we should be we-rie,
In an interview earlier in the day, guild returning officer
Anthony Jackman denied claims by electoral candidate Barry
He showed documentary evidence of a March 18 meeting which
showed the then guild had agreed to appoint him as the returning
Jackman said Paradath was most present at that meeting.
are a lot of untruths being told by Barry Paradath,
Jackman said all ballot boxes were escorted by campus police,
even the ones sent to Mt Hope.
He said he witnessed the recount on Sunday evening, which
was overseen by an independent auditing firm.
The findings concluded that there were no changes in any of
the totals, Jackman said.