Source alleges TSG admin tried to overrule commissioner, both deny

An anonymous source alleges Temple Student Government's Senior Leadership Team, including Kayla Martin (left), the vice president of services, Student Body President Tyrell Mann-Barnes and Paige Hill, the vice president of external affairs, tried to sway the 2018-19 executive elections in favor of VoiceTU, but both deny this allegation. | GENEVA HEFFERNAN FILE PHOTO

An anonymous source alleged Temple Student Government’s Senior Leadership Team unfairly favored VoiceTU, a campaign in the 2018-19 TSG executive elections.

On Tuesday, a Twitter account called TSG Whistleblowing released a document detailing the allegation against the Senior Leadership Team. The team allegedly tried to “sway the election in favor of Voice TU,” by giving VoiceTU more time to prepare for an impromptu campaign presentation at the General Assembly meeting on Monday.

According to the document, the two other teams — IgniteTU and UniteTU — did not have enough time to prepare for the presentation.

Elections Commissioner Daritza Santana allegedly tried to cancel the presentations after talking to the teams, but was overruled by the Senior Leadership Team. Santana said many of the claims made in the document were “made up.”

She said that current Vice President of Services Kayla Martin did not overrule her decision to cancel the presentations. Martin also denied this allegation.

“I think that TSG has stayed away from anything related to the election,” Santana said. “They’ve never stepped in and tried to tell me what to do.”

However, IgniteTU’s campaign manager Marissa Martini and Noah Goff, campaign manager for UniteTU said the claims in the document are true, and their teams were told at short notice about the presentations. The teams tried to “make the circumstances fairer for all campaigns,” according to the document.

The presentations were then limited, so teams were only able to present a slideshow of their team’s social media handles, instead of a more extensive presentation VoiceTU was allegedly prepared for.

Martin said IgniteTU and UniteTU felt that VoiceTU had an advantage because many of its members spend more time in the TSG office in the Student Center.

The ticket’s vice presidential and presidential candidates are all students on the current TSG administration or Parliament. Tyler Lum is the current TSG director of government affairs and presidential candidate of VoiceTU. Almas Ayaz is current director of campus life and diversity and vice presidential candidate of services of VoiceTU and Bridget Warlea is the current speaker of Parliament and vice presidential candidate of external affairs.

All three students have access to the TSG office, but using the office for preparing campaigns is prohibited in the elections code.

Trent Reardon, the vice presidential candidate of services and Cameron Kaczor, the vice presidential candidate of external affairs candidates for IgniteTU are also a part of current TSG administration, as promotions manager and secretary, respectively.

Read about the platforms of the 2018-19 executive tickets

Santana said she never complained about “not being included or trusted in the TSG community,” as stated in the document. She said the only issue she’s had with Senior Leadership Team is a lack of communication, which has since been resolved.

Santana added that she does not believe any of the events alleged in the tweet are an overreach of power by the Senior Leadership Team.

“We all came into a room and we all sat down and came to an agreement, and I think I made a fair call,” Santana said. “There was nothing [Student Body President Tyrell Mann-Barnes] or [Kayla Martin] could have said to change my mind, because at the end of the day, I am commissioner and I make the last call.”

VoiceTU’s Communications Director Morgan Pivovarnik said the team did not have more time to prepare and they were told about the presentation at the same time as the two other campaign. The overheard conversation mentioned in the allegations was a misunderstanding.

“Tyler did not ask if he could present campaigns slides at the [General Assembly meeting],” she said. “He was asking for clarification if he would be entering the GA as a candidate or a director, because he can’t be both.”

Alyssa Biederman
can be reached at alyssa.biederman@temple.edu Or you can follow Alyssa on Twitter @BiedermanAlyssa Follow The Temple News @TheTempleNews

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