Girish Gupta

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Union General Meeting Sketch
Oct. 26, 2009

Published by Student Direct: Mancunion

It was the first General Meeting of the new year, a chance for old friends and foes to get together, put aside their differences and start over. Even the motions were fresh (bar online voting). No more talk of Gaza; no more talk of the rights and wrongs of boycotting Coca Cola and no more of whatever else got the student body so riled last year.

Here we were, we 260, waiting to discover whether the University of Manchester’s vibrant Fuse FM was going to get itself a permanent station manager and wondering if the general apathy that seeps through the entire student body could be overturned with online voting.

Let’s be honest. We didn’t expect to be talking about the Iranian Students’ Movement, reproductive rights or the sensible taking of drugs. But we were pleased for their presence: a link between the expected quorum-busting first two motions and the traditional ‘let’s have the rest of Wednesday off’ apathy of yesteryear.

Not even Ubuntu—the Fairtrade Coca-Cola ‘equivalent’ named for a humanist philosophy rather than a popular middle class drug—and videos of funky Fuse FM basement sessions courtesy of Manchester band Kid British could entice the extra 40 people to reach that figure called quorum.

A quick office survey suggests that as well as not coming along to the meetings, most of you were not aware of the word ‘quorum’ before you found that there was a lack of one at Union General Meetings.

Three hundred people. That’s quorum for the Union—the number of people that must be present for motions to be voted on.

Without quorum nothing gets passed or even discussed. If nothing gets discussed, nothing happens. So come along because if you don’t, I’m really going to struggle writing these sketches.




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An interview with Brian Cox
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33 crimes committed against Manchester students every day
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‘Vote with your heart and make the difference’ – Nick Clegg
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Labour fail to turn up at University hustings
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Students stranded abroad as summer term begins
Apr. 26, 2010


Celebrity endorsements and mudslinging in race for Manchester marginal
Apr. 26, 2010








© Girish Gupta