Vacancies remain in CMCSC amid independent slate win

With a total voter turnout of 39.14%, all seven independent candidates who ran as a slate took over the College of Mass Communication Student Council (CMCSC).

Despite this win, the incoming council would have to face six vacancies, namely the treasurer, film representatives, broadcast media arts studies representatives and one journalism representative.

In the previous regular elections, an all-women slate of five candidates led by outgoing chairperson Kiara Gorrospe also won the local polls and operated with eight vacant posts.

Read: Independent all-women slate takes over CMC student council

This year, incumbent CMC representative to the University Student Council (USC) Gnoiel Edelweiss Nazal garnered 325 votes against 37 abstentions to secure the chairperson post.

As for the vice chairperson position, Fatima Faith Baltazar won the position with 311 votes versus 51 abstentions. 

Meanwhile, Cyrus Paulo Quiapos clinched the position of CMC representative to the USC with 297 votes. Quaipos is one of the six college representatives composing the USC, which recently incurred vacancies in all councilor and standard bearer positions after abstentions dominated the university-wide elections.

Read: USC seats left vacant as abstentions prevailed anew

Emili Joy Capule was elected as secretary, securing 289 votes. She is currently a Communication Research (CRes) representative.

Both CRes representative candidates Chiello Fernandez and Alyanna Louisse Marie Avergonzado received 67 votes each, making CRES the sole department to complete its slots for representatives in the CMCSC.

Incumbent CMC Representative to the UFC Guia Marie Mistades won as the sole representative of the Journalism department with 99 votes against 26 abstentions. 

Among the independent slate’s campaigns are safe and inclusive spaces for all, upholding press freedom, and strengthening the call against commercialization.

This year’s voter turnout is significantly lower than last year’s 50.38%. 

View the breakdown of votes here:


However, College Secretary Ivy Claudio emphasized that this is already a high voter turnout for a two-day voting period compared to the previous year which was held for one week.  

“I think ang kailangan din nating isipin [na] may kailangan talaga magbago doon sa election system. Hindi pwedeng next year ay ganito ulit tayo,” Claudio said. 

She further explained that there was a shift in the political participation of students with regard to the lack of student representatives evident in the remaining vacancies, as well as the low voter turnouts despite a hybrid polling system.

“Malaking factor yung pandemya [at] ‘yung kinakaharap din ngayon. But at the same time, hindi naman pwedeng lagi lang nating sasabihin na kasi nangyari ‘yung pandemya,” she added.

Claudio emphasized that the waning political participation should not only be a concern of the student leaders but also of the students because it will also “benefit the student body if there’s good student leadership.”

Special elections

With vacancies observed not only within CMC but other colleges as well, talks of special elections rose to complete representation in the student councils. However, incumbent CMCSC Chairperson Kiara Gorrospe explained that there are confusing guidelines in the CMCSC Constitution regarding special elections and appointments, prompting the need for revisions.

“Every five years dapat siya ni-ra-ratify kaya napaka-long overdue na talaga ‘yung pagbabago ng mga probisyon nito,” she said.

After revising the said provisions, Gorrospe added that there will be a ratification process wherein the student body must reach the majority affirmative vote of the whole amended CMCSC Constitution. 

However, the process does not end there. After the ratification process, the College Secretary said that the incoming council must first send a request for special elections, subject to evaluation and approval of the CMC administration.

“Wala namang deadline for this request, pero magsisimula ito by next sem na kasi next academic year magsisimula ang termino ng mga nanalong candidates,” Claudio added.