The petition, which sought to initiate impeachment proceedings against Student Union President Katie Ascough, was submitted to Returning Officer of the Students’ Union, Stephen Devine on Monday evening before being rejected.
The petition, which garnered 1,620 names, was rejected because it did not contain the signatures of the individual petitioners – a necessity under UCD’s Student Union constitution.
Article 6.5 of the constitution states: “In the case of a referendum by petition, each petitioner must sign the referendum petition underneath, at the end of, or on a sheet attached to, an exact copy of the wording of the proposed referendum and provide their name, programme, stage and student number,” reports University Observer.
“It was disappointing to have the initial petition rejected but we were so successful in getting large numbers of signatories that we are optimistic we will get them again. This has happened before with petitions and is frustrating but errors occur, and the students determination to uphold democracy,” Amy Crean of the ‘Impeach UCDSU President’ group told UO.
The ‘Impeach UCDSU President’ group said it will continue efforts to impeach Ascough, an ardent anti-abortion advocate who ordered the removal of information about abortion services in the UK from a publication for first year students – despite the fact that similar information has been available through the Student Union for two decades.
The group said it will begin collecting signatures from Wednesday and hoped to have the 835 necessary to trigger an impeachment vote by Thursday, October 5.
The University Observer also reports that “several eyewitnesses” have seen Ascough supposedly preparing for the referendum campaign against the impeachment, apparently posing with ‘Vote No’ signs outside the Science building this week.
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