Executive and Ents clash
The Sabbatical officers were informed only a matter of weeks ago that the Snack Bar would be out of use to students all week due to the presence of the television production crew. The booking, taken by Entertainments manager Rod Martin, was made early in the year and did not at any stage seek consultation with the Executive in the process.
Union President John Roger said he was disappointed that he and his team had not been told of the booking, which saw both the Dragonslayers and the Christian Union displaced from their weekly meeting venue. He asserted that this was primarily student space and students should come first at all times. General Manager Barney Hughes claimed the venue, which doesn't have heat or electricity, is virtually uninhabitable for societies but that the Christian Union and Dragonslayers, due to their large numbers, have an unwritten agreement with the Union for use of this space.
Rod Martin, a former student Sabbatical officer who retained the post of Entertainments manager when it was made permanent some years ago, refused to comment on the situation. A Union source has claimed TG4 is paying somewhere in the region of £5000 for the space from Monday 3rd to Friday 7th December.
A further issue regarding the refusal by the Executive to allow a banner to be hung outside the Union was thought by some to be related to the open display of Irish language. However, TG4 are not pursuing the matter and the Executive have refuted the argument stating they simply do not wish to advertise further the fact that student space has been hired out by a private company without their consultation.
What is your opinion? Does the hiring out of this space bother you as a student? Is it another example of the privatisation of our Union or the lack of substantial power of the Student Officers?