SAS Senator dropout continues council duties

Holy Angel University – University Student Council (HAU-USC) Director for Press Relations and Communications, April Angeles, continues to perform directorial obligations within the council despite officially dropping out of the university on March 12, 2024.


Angeles stated in an interview with The Angelite that she is willing to continue her remaining responsibilities within the council regardless of dropping out due to mental instability; being mentally, emotionally, and physically tired.


Angeles mentioned that the approaching end of the academic year made it hard for the council to appoint another senator and there are no subsequent candidates from the School of Arts and Sciences (SAS) to assume her position. 


“Patapos na  [S.Y.] and everyone is busy, mahihirapan na humanap at wala rin kase[ng] kasunod saming tatlong [SAS] senator para magstep-up. Also, willing din naman kasi ako[ng] tapusin na lahat ng tasks na dapat tapusin,” Angeles stated.


Likewise, according to HAU-USC President Shejanira Arcilla, the council permitted Angeles to remain in the council to avoid “abrupt transitions” considering that their term is nearing its end.


“We aim to avoid any abrupt transitions in the council, especially that our term is nearly ending,” Arcilla said.

Additionally, Paul Ernest Carreon, HAU – Office of Student Affairs (HAU-OSA) Student Activities Coordinator, stated that upon dropping out, Angeles’ position in the council is automatically vacated but she is still responsible for the tasks and projects assigned to her prior to the vacating of her position.

“Given that she’s managing an ongoing preparation to a project, though her position is vacated, her responsibility to finish tasks assigned to her prior to her resignation remains,” Carreon stated.


Potential loophole 


Meanwhile, Nicholle Merano, University Student Elections Commission Chairperson, stated that the case of Angeles — still assuming the HAU-USC Press Relations and Communications Office despite officially withdrawing her affiliation from the university — poses a potential loophole in the constitution.


“Permanent vacancy in an office is defined as ‘death, resignation, impeachment, expulsion from the University, or permanent illness.’ So, there is that potential loophole po where someone elected to an office (could) continue to serve in office even after losing their qualifications (such as being a student),” Merano said.


“That being said, outside of the literal interpretation of the Constitution, a court or tribunal could very well find that certain qualifications enumerated in the Const[titution] as being required for candidates are also required for maintaining their office (such as being enrolled in an undergraduate degree program),” she added. 


However, Merano mentioned that no pre-existing court or tribunal in the university can make that determination. 


At present, almost a month after Angeles has officially dropped out, the transition of the Director for Press Relations and Communication position to a legitimate member of the council is still in process as per Arcilla. 


Via Lana Erin Ramos

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