FEBRUARY 28, 2014 marked the Ateneo Law School’s Student Council (SC) elections. Polls opened at 11:00 a.m. and ended at 6:00 p.m., capping off an almost week-long campaign for 13 candidates.
Incumbent Third Year Batch Representative Armand Dulay (3A) bagged the position of Student Council President leading his opponent, Jech Tiu (3C), by almost 140 votes. The President-elect’s first order of business would be to assess past councils’ performances in order to address areas in need of improvement. “A more consultative, student-driven, and efficient Council,” is what he aims for this year, with a promise that “this will be your best Student Council ever.”
The race to become Externals Vice President was the closest the student body has seen in a while. With a three-vote difference from Regine Abuel (2D), Mudir Estrella (2C) emerged victorious through his call to eliminate stereotyping and his vision of creating “an SC which will truly be one with the students and of the Filipino people.” Incumbent Second Year Batch Representative Cyndy Dela Cruz (2D), who ran unopposed, won the position of Internals Vice President with 517 votes to a meager 173 for ‘abstain’. Dela Cruz intends the incoming school year’s internal projects to “focus on micro-management and efficiency, putting premium on quality over quantity.”
An “efficient use of funds” is what elected Treasurer, Quito Nitura (3A), who ran unopposed, wishes to bring to the Student Council. During his term, he wishes the Student Council to “be able to fund as many organization projects as it can, in the most efficient way.” Also unopposed, Secretary-General-elect Harvey Bilang (2C) won the votes of the student body, garnering 395 votes. When asked about his plans for the year, Harvey intends on prioritizing “cleaning, and if possible, renovating the LSAC this summer,” as well as getting the grievance machinery up and running in order to achieve his goal of redefining the position of Secretary-General.
This year’s local or batch elections was also one for the books. Three eligible candidates ran for Second Year Batch Representative. Daphne Marcelo (1C) and Jewelle Santos (1B), battled it out, head-to-head, with Michael “Magic Mike” Villanueva (1B), who eventually won the sophomores over. As a new year approaches, with much in store for the incoming sophomores, Villanueva urges his batchmates “to join him in making some magic to get through (law school) with flying colors.”
Running unopposed, Third Year Batch Representative-elect Johanne Bautista’s (2B) “S-E-E-S (Support, Effective Representation, Empowerment, Solidarity) Plan” platform won the support of her batchmates thus catapulting her into the Student Council. At the top of her list is the implementation of her proposed academics kit and thesis kit. Promising true and honest service, “maging Sheena ka man,” Sheena Tengco (3D) was elected as the Fourth Year Batch Representative with a slim six-vote margin over her rival, Rose Cupin (3A). Anticipating a loaded year ahead, Tengco hopes for one united batch “eyeing one goal which is to graduate and finish strong.”
The counting of ballots ended a little after 9:00 p.m., with new Commission on Elections and Judicial Appointments (CEJA) Chairperson, Allen Gerona, officially announcing the winners.