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The SGA Election: What You Need to Know

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The SGA Election: What You Need to Know

On Monday, March 25 the Student Government Association (SGA) held their annual Executive Board elections. For the first time in Le Moyne’s history, there were three sets of candidates running for the positions of President and Vice President (VP) on the ballot. Campaign groups were as follows, Hamza Elhabbal/Jakub Kulakowski, Mia Franko/Meaghan Burrows, and Nick Kattato/Dan Martini, respectively.

The election resulted in the victory of Hamza Elhabbal and Jakub Kulakowski.

Six grievances were submitted to the executive board about Hamza’s behavior during the election. Issue was taken with Hamza and Jakub’s campaigning outside the La Casse Dining Center. One was discarded immediately because it was submitted late. Two were discarded due to a technicality in the SGA constitution that only candidates can submit grievances.

The Executive Board discussed what to do for several weeks while the General Board remained out of the loop. They remained at a standstill because they were unable to form an elections committee to review the grievances. Mia Franko is chair of election and would have to get approval from Hamza to form a committee. As the two were opponents during the election, they were unable to do this.

Eventually, the grievances were given to VP of Finance, Nick Infantino, whom the Executive Board believed to be the most unbiased Executive member.

The SGA General Board was furious that they had not been informed about these proceedings. As outlined in the SGA Constitution, the board has the right to form an AD-HOC committee to deal with election disputes. This was never formed.

Several members of the General Board attempted to call a special meeting to form an AD-HOC committee but it was shut down by the Executive Board. The issues brought to light during the election were not properly dealt with and the proceedings that followed went against the Constitution.

On Tuesday April 24, Dolphy Day, a letter of impeachment was submitted to the SGA.

On Wednesday April 25, the SGA General Board met to discuss what would happen going forward, in regards to the letter of impeachment submitted to the board the day before. The purpose of this meeting was to determine whether or not the SGA would move forward with an impeachment process.

During this meeting, board members voiced their concerns about how the post-election issues had been handled. The main concern of General Board members was that they had been kept out of the loop regarding post-election proceedings. Many members felt that their voices had not been heard and, as a result, neither were student body voices. They felt the biggest problem wasn’t necessarily what happened during the election, but that election discrepancy procedures were not carried out as outlined in the SGA Constitution.

At the meeting, incidents of racial and gender bias from Hamza were also brought up, prompting a heated debate among general board members.

Student body observers, as well as Hamza, were asked to leave and the rest of the board took a vote on how to proceed. In a majority vote, the SGA board voted to move forward with an impeachment trial presided over by senior board member, Corey Curran.

What does this mean going forward? If Hamza is impeached, a re-election will be necessary, but this may be difficult due to the school year ending in mere days. There also remains the question of how this level of miscommunication and confusion happened and how it can be fixed. Much of the meeting on the 25 was spent poring over the Constitution’s intricate details; perhaps the answer lies there.

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The SGA Election: What You Need to Know