Voting for the 2021 Student Representative Council (SRC) starts on 26 October 2020, and as with many other key events, it has moved online due to COVID-19. PDBY asked students whether they will be voting in the SRC election this year, whether they think it is important to vote, and why.

Damien Govender, third year BCom Accounting Sciences
I am not voting in the SRC elections. I have never voted since I’ve started my first year at UP in 2018.
I think it’s important to vote for any form of an election that affects your personal capacity. Whether to vote for a political party, class representative, or other governing bodies. The SRC is no different – it comprises of a student body that aims to uplift the university in many areas such as academics, student support, sports etc. Each party has its own agenda and vision which should be analyzed carefully before deciding on such.
The reason I have never voted is because there is often very little interaction between myself and the SRC.

There may be intangible connections and benefits that I have received over the course of my degree that I shall acknowledge.  My degree is extremely intensive and free time has decreased drastically over the years as the workload and difficulty increased. Consequently, there is very little time for other student activities such as socials, sporting events etc.There is also a strong support and admin structure within my degree. We have class representatives, academic trainees, organizations such as House CA, and our lecturers who provided us with ample support and opportunities. I have also not done the appropriate research into the various parties and refuse to make an uneducated vote. The combination of the factors above is why I don’t think it’s important to vote for SRC.

Sibabalwe Ndlela, third year LLB Yes.
We live in a democratic country and university is part of a larger community, community being South Africa. Just like how national elections are conducted where everyone is given a fair chance to vote for their leaders, the same is done in [the] SRC elections. Democracy plays a huge role in South Africa. SRC elections are just that, democracy.

As students, I think it is important to vote so that we can have a say in those who represent us. Voting for a candidate gives us the power to have a partial say in how things will be run. It is our chance as students to speak out to candidates of our choice that can empathise with us and that will ultimately make a change for the better. I would like to vote for someone that will hear my voice and my problems, and for this reason, I will be voting.

Eleni Athanasiadis, MSc Human Physiology
Toni Ferreira, third year BCom General No.
I don’t see the point in voting for the SRC, I am in my final year of studies and I have never seen or heard of the SRC doing anything. I also didn’t know we had a SRC president until David Kabwa started speaking on behalf of the students.
It is important to vote because by not voting you are giving up your chance to raise your voice. Voting is essential because it is your opportunity to strive for change. You can choose to elect who you feel will have your best interests at all times when representing you in front of the University’s management. It is a chance to choose if the people currently holding office have been delivering according to your expectations and if they should continue to hold office or not.
Gloria Choma, second year BA Law
Tiaan Janse Van Rensburg, first year BEng Civil Engineering Yes.

It is not always easy for students to communicate with faculties or to find the right person to talk to. That is why I see the SRC as the middleman for students and administrators to communicate.

Angel Khwela, second year LLB Yes.
Because my opinion, just like everyone else’s, matters and I want to contribute by making sure the people I believe are best suited for the position, get the position. After all, this impacts my future too.


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