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‘Revolution’ slate, independent presidential candidate no-shows at RSU debate

By Thea Gribilas and Heidi Lee

At the Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU) debate on Tuesday, the ‘Revolution’ slate and one independent candidate did not show up. 

The only Revolution candidate to attend the debate was presidential candidate Ahmed Ali, who arrived at the debate late, despite the slate having five candidates running for executive positions. 

According to Ali, the rest of the candidates on his slate were “unable to make the debate.”

Independent presidential candidate Marina Gerges also did not attend the debate. In an interview with The Eyeopener, Gerges said she would rather use the debate time to campaign instead of attending the event.

At the end of the debate, an attendee known only as ‘JM’ asked whether “certain candidates were given the questions before the debate or if they were reading off statements [when responding to questions].”

Candidates were each asked three pre-screened questions by chief returning officer Jenna Rose, who continuously rejected The Eye’s requests for student reporters to pose questions, despite this being common practice in previous RSU debates.

The meeting ended before the question could be answered. The Eye later received emails from both Rose and the deputy returning officer, known only as Jash, believing Eye editors had posed the question, adding that the call was ended by accident. 

“I apologize for ending the call. That was not the intention. I had hit the end before you started your question,” Jash wrote.

In an email from Rose, she stated that none of the questions were shared with the candidates before the debate. “I assume folks had pre-written answers before they came on,” said Rose.

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