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Image Credit: NATO

Leo Buckley removed as Oxford Union President-Elect

Leo Buckley has been removed from his position of Union President-Elect following a conviction in two cases of electoral malpractice. Julia Maranhao-Wong has consequently been instated as the Union President-Elect, and will serve her presidential term in Trinity.

Leo Buckley was elected as Union President last week, defeating Julia Maranhao-Wong by three votes. The turnout was noticeably significantly higher than last term’s.

Two charges of electoral malpractice were brought against Buckley to an Oxford Union tribunal. These charges were violations of Rule 33 of the Union Rules and Regulations. Buckley was acquitted for one, but convicted for the other, leading to a recount.

The first charge was for making an “illicit statement” during the campaign, essentially an untrue or misleading statement with intent of influencing the course of the election, as per the Rule 33 (a)(i)(1) of the Union Rules and Regulations. Buckley was acquitted of this charge.

The second charge was for “harassment, bullying, or victimisation in connection with the Election”, as per Rule 33 (a)(i)(28). Under the Union Rules and Regulations, this consists of “engaging in unwanted and unwarranted conduct which has the purpose or effect of violating another person’s dignity, or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating, or offensive environment for another person.”

Buckley was convicted of this charge, leading to his disqualification from the Union Presidential Election. A recount was therefore carried out, in which Maranhao-Wong received 523 first preferences, and re-opening nominations 224. She will consequently be the Union President-Elect next term.

In addition to his disqualification, Buckley was suspended by the Election Tribunal from the Oxford Union until the 10th Week of Trinity Term 2024.

Image Credit: NATO Multimedia Library/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 via Flickr