By SELBY STEWART
A new party has emerged for the 2018 MSA election called Activate, with incumbent party Together claiming the group is a rebrand of last year’s party Go!
Presidential candidate Despina Skourlis denied the party was a rebranding of Go!, which suffered a heavy defeat in last year’s MSA election after a 12-year reign at the helm.
“We are a fresh ticket,” Ms Skourlis said.
“A lot of people from Go! are running with other tickets, they are pretty scattered.”
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Together’s campaign manager and 2018 secretary candidate, Jett Fogarty, said it was “pretty clear” Activate and Go! were the same party.
“Many of their positions were held by former Go! members so it is obvious they are trying to rebrand,” he said.
At least 10 of Activate’s candidates have run in MSA elections under the Go! ticket, including Ms Skourlis and 2017 Go! presidential candidate Shreeya Luthra.
But Ms Skourlis said Mr Fogarty’s claim was wrong.
“They would say that, but no, I refute that completely,” she said.
“We are just a group of progressive people who want to make a change and we see the MSA as an avenue for positive change.”
Activate has chosen to not run alongside Left Action – a group that was in partnership with Go! at last year’s election.
“We want to do it on our own,” Ms Skourlis said.
“We truly believe that we are strong enough and our values are strong, and we believe in our values.”
Go! has retained one nomination under its ticket this year with Matilda Grey running for the 2018 Student Welfare Committee.
Former Go! members now running under the Activate ticket include:
Despina Skourlis – Ran for the Monash Student Council under Go! Now nominated for president of Activate.
Harry Kennewell – Former queer officer under Go! Now nominated for secretary under Activate.
Ruby Angel – Ran for Lot’s Wife editor under Go!. Now nominated for public affairs under Activate.
Eleanor Scott – Ran for Go! secretary. Now nominated for education officer under Activate.
Jess Stone: Former Go! secretary. Now Activate’s authorising officer.
Shreeya Luthra – In 2017 ran for president of Go! This year Ms Luthra has been nominated for the National Union of Students (NUS) under Activate.
Jakob Cobby – In 2017 ran for the Student Welfare Committee under Go! This year he has been nominated for education officer under Activate.
Yen Zhi Ng – Ran for Go! student committee. Now nominated for welfare under Activate.
Alexander Toohey – Ran for the Student Affairs Committee under Go! Now nominated for the Student Affairs Committee and the Creative and Live Arts Committee under Activate.
Grace Britton – Ran for the Monash Student Council under Go! Now nominated for women’s officer and the NUS under Activate.