USC COMELEC Hosts SSC Presidential and Vice Presidential Debates
Photo by Angelo Nico Daroy
The presidential and vice presidential candidates of this academic year’s Supreme Student Council (SSC) elections engaged in the Presidential Debate, as hosted by the USC –Commission on Elections (COMELEC) yesterday in the SAS Open Theatre. The aim of the event was to introduce the standard bearers of the three political parties — Student Alliance for Nationalism and Democracy (STAND), Tingog Carolinian and Student Power Party (SPP) — and each of their platforms and credentials.
The three presidential candidates are Kerinna Miren Atillo (STAND), Bret Alfonso Balbuena (Tingog Carolinian) and Carl Anthony Albaño (SPP). Their respective running mates are Isabella Kathrina Villarojo, Janet Dawn Abines and Andrew Vincent Alcantara.
The candidates were each given seven minutes to introduce themselves and their respective parties. Four rounds of debate then followed: the first involving questions from student organizations; the second from Carolinians through social media; the third, among the candidates themselves; and the last from the audience. Each candidate was given a minute to answer the questions, with the candidates from the opposing parties given the chance for rebuttal for 30 seconds.
During the debates, questions regarding the damaged university facilities, the similarity of their platforms and the credentials of the candidates arose. In general, each candidate stressed the values of his or her party and the different strategies of implementation he or she can adopt when voted in office. Goings-on and issues within the current SSC were highlighted, including the drafting of Magna Carta of Students’ Rights, the alleged contradiction of a “colorless” SSC against the values of each party and the termination of two councilors from service among others. Each candidate presented the standpoint of his or her respective party regarding such matters.
After the debates had concluded, members from each respective party gathered in their own groups to congratulate their representatives.
While the Presidential Debate was only able to present the running vice president and presidential candidates, the upcoming Grand Rally on March 7 to 8 will introduce the candidates for the student councilor positions. The upcoming final election will be held on March 10.