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Partying as part of campaign: How KU candidate reaches out to voters

From Ronald Reagan stealing debate notes from Jimmy Carter to Francois Hollande winning the presidency with an offensive rap song, electoral campaign have always been the place where candidates show their creativity, goals, honesty, and, more or less, out-of-the-box thinking.

When it comes to university elections there is not much difference with candidates investing their time, soul and money in their campaign, aiming for the best.

Photos, stickers, whiteboard campaigns, posters, hats and photo booth props with the wording #ElectElaha are all part of Elaha Walizadeh’s campaign when she ran for Penryhn Road Officer in this year’s KUSU Elections.

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Omarion, McCluskys Kingston. Photo: Elaha Walizadeh

 

She said: “I decided to attend the Omarion event at McClusky’s, which was the biggest party in town, to reach students who are not involved in the politics side of the students’ union.

“They usually miss out on many Union activities or wouldn’t normally get involved in elections.”

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Post signing, Elaha Walizadeh’s campaign. Photo: Elaha Walizadeh.

 

The candidate said that her campaign with the slogan “We Will Be Heard” aims to reach out to all students.

She said: “It was a strategy to broaden up student engagement because these students can’t be ignored.

“One of my main policies is ‘fair representation’ and most students find student politics boring but it doesn’t mean we don’t reach out to them.”

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Elaha Walizadeh’s campaign. Photo: Elaha Walizadeh’s personal archive.

 

Elaha has chosen to run in a slate with Miharsh from Kingston Hill campus and Chathushka Dias from Roehampton Vale Campus, sharing funds and voters.

She said: “It’s like teamwork, you get support from each other’s supporters, and elections can get very draining.

“It’s good to have people there to work together with.”

Every candidate has a £50 budget, but if one runs in a slate, they can share costs between other candidates.

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Penrhyn Road Campus, Elaha Walizadeh campaig. Photo: Elaha Walizadeh.

 

Elaha said that her campaign is inspired by Malia Bouattia’s campaign for NUS Black Students Officer.

“She had ‘black power fist’ on t-shirts and posters, which suggests unity and empowerment, so I am definitely quite inspired by her as an individual and by the campaign she ran,” Elaha said.

Check out more of Elaha’s campaign photos:

Omarion, McCluskys Kingston. Photo: Elaha Walizadeh

 

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Elaha Walizadeh. Photo: Elaha Walizadeh’s personal archive

 

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Penrhyn Road Campus. Photo: Elaha Walizadeh.

 

 

 

 

About Paula Munteanu

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