These are the candidates running to be the next president of the NUS (National Union of Students). The vote will take place at the NUS' annual conference in April where delegates from affiliated student unions will cast their ballots.
Bouattia is the current NUS president. During her time as president she has been involved in a number of controversies surrounding accusations that she has used antisemetic language. She was fount to have been antisemetic by a group of MPs and more recently by an internal NUS report.
Bouattia wants a 'strong, transformative union' and has promised to campaign for better mental health services, support free abortions in Northern Ireland and facilitate a national anti-deportation network for foreign students. She also wants to improve "democracy, accountability and accessibility" in the NUS.
Tom Harwood was elected to be an NUS delegate this year in a campaign which even saw him invited to speak live on the BBC. His novel campaign mocked and criticised the NUS and he pledged to 'defeat ISIS' and 'bring down the Tory government'. Before this he ran the national 'Students for Britain' campaign, the students wing of Vote Leave. Harwood says the NUS is "failing students" and is out of touch.
His plan to "turn the NUS around" involves sticking to student issues, not campaigning on geopolitical ones, introducing a system whereby all students get to vote for the NUS president and ending secret ballots at NUS conferences so students can see the records of their elected delegates. Harwood wants to focus on the "real issue of living costs" and work to be taken more seriously by the government.
Shakira Martin is the current VP for Further Education. According to a Guardian article, she "learned her business skills dealing drugs" - but her main focus is now on improving access to valuable education. Always making headlines (in student papers at least), we reported on her a few months ago when she got involved in a Facebook spat with a fellow NUS NEC member.
Martin's manifesto promises to "expose and demolish class barriers in education", give "students meaningful and secure employment" and empower students' unions. She also wants to anonymise the UCAS system to prevent discrimination based on a person's name as well as introduce a specific bursary for student carers.
Who's Running to be NUS President? Reviewed by Student Voices on 20:40 Rating: