Interview and manifesto analysis: Ali Bahtti – SRC Vice President Education candidate

Published

Hamish Morrison
Investigations Editor
Manifesto Analysis

If Ali Bhatti is running in good faith, he seems well-intentioned, although ill-informed and impressively under-qualified. If he’s not, the joke isn’t particularly funny. The most disturbing thing about Bhatti’s manifesto is the numerous Trump references littered throughout. His insistence that the slogans “#make lectures recorded again” and “What’s more, I’ll get the University to pay for it” were his own inventions and are not intended to be a homage to President Trump’s campaign rhetoric are unconvincing at best.

In keeping with Trump’s style, he seems to rely on his own facts – such as the claim that 90% of lecture theatres are equipped to record lectures, which he gathered from his own uncorroborated research. He also seems to think that it is not only within the remit of a VP of Education to commission a building (outwith the planned campus extension), but also that this will be possible within his one year term and that the university will be willing to front the cost.

In one of his more grounded policies he proposes weekly feedback sessions with class representatives. While it is true that this would only take 10 minutes of a 50 minute lecture, he neglects the time this would take for both teaching staff and class representatives. People are already reluctant to sign up for the position of class representative, increasing the pressure and time commitments on them seems like this will only exacerbate the problem.

Bhatti is inexperienced and seems to not fully understand the ins and outs of his prospective position. This, along with his unfulfillable promises make him a poor fit for the role, and his willingness to co-opt Trump campaign slogans and then seemingly outright lie about it makes him unthinkable.