Published on November 20th, 2012 | by Editor0
Political Organisations Clash over Facebook Event
Earlier today, a recorded phone call between Pulse [Social Democrat Students] president Clive Farrugia and SDM [Christian Democrat Students] vice-president Joseph Grech was uploaded to YouTube.
The video, entitled ‘Pulse + KSJC = Democracy?’ featured the Pulse president Clive Farrugia threatening to take the AGM and electoral commission ‘into his own hands’ by electing 10 credible Pulse members to the commission.
The recording starts off with an excerpt alleging Farrugia indeed gave consent to upload the video before quickly jumping into a 6-minute-long conversation between Farrugia and Grech. Pulse PRO Ryan Spagnol claims that the recording was in fact manipulated from two separate conversations, and thus SDM only had permission to record one of them.
The phone call follows a Facebook event for the KSJC [Junior College Students' Council]Annual General Meeting set up by SDM, which prompted Farrugia to request removal of the event. Farrugia then went on to threaten that he would take control of both the AGM and the electoral commission if SDM did not take the event down.
The video has since been taken down following a request by the police.
Speaking to InsiterOnline, SDM President Mark Grech [known as 'il-Guru'] said that he hopes that Farrugia will go back on his word, and asked him to practice what he preaches as such implications are not democratic.
‘Why did he say those words?’ asked Grech, whilst assuring that the event would not be taken down and SDM would be contesting the eleciton as usual.
Pulse secretary general Ryan Spagnol, speaking on behalf of the organisation, said that Pulse had been working to reduce the partisan aspect of the general meeting by instructing their members not to wearPulse t-shirts and trying to promote neutral voting. In light of such proposals, Spagnol said that SDM were looking to hijack the event and score cheap political points by releasing such recordings.
On the recording, Spangol clarified that the phone call was manipulated and uploaded without Farrugia’s prior consent; and that the Police have instructed SDM to remove the video. Legal action may be looked into shortly.
On Farrugia’s comments, Spagnol claimed that the two organisations had reached an agreement following the phone call. The agreement held that SDM’s Facebook event would be removed following an official announcement by the KSJC.
Farrugia had earlier on threatened to elect 10 ‘credible’ Pulse representatives to the electoral commission, rather than the traditional balanced 5-5 representatives from both organisations. This threat was withdrawn following the aformentioned agreement.
While standing by Farrugia’s words, Spagnol said despite SDM’s attempts to score political points with the student population, five representatives and two reserves from each organisation would be elected to the commission as agreed every year.