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Burns wins second term as NUS Scotland President
After winning via a coin toss in 2009, Liam Burns has won a second term as NUS Scotland president
Melanie Archer
Wednesday, 17 March, 2010 | 00:00
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Credit: Liam Burns

NUS Scotland President Liam Burns will enjoy a second year in office as he was re-elected at the NUS Scotland annual conference in Dunfermline last weekend.

Mr Burns won 87 votes while his sole opponent Nathan Sparling received 10 and Re-Open Nominations was granted 3 votes.

Mr Sparling has also been a candidate in the controversial presidential race at Edinburgh Napier University, but withdrew from the contest on 10 March.

Speaking to The Journal, the winner, Mr Burns said: "I'm over the moon to be working for students' associations for another year. We're going into some incredibly difficult times and if we're going to win for students, not just keep the status quo, then we need to continue working as a collective.”

Mr Burns also expressed his relief at having a mandate for the year, after last year's election where both candidates received 52 votes and Burns won through sheer luck out of a coin toss: “I'm happy to finally have a mandate but anything other than a coin toss is a bonus!”

He listed his main priorities: “Education funding, accommodation legislation and standards and the quality of learning and teaching all remain priorities for Scottish students.

"The Scottish Parliamentary elections and fighting top-up fees at the general election ballot box are our immediate concern. On that I hope all students in Edinburgh have signed up to voteforstudents.co.uk/scottish!"

Ross Macrae, Edinburgh University Student Association delegate to NUS, told The Journal: "Liam is a fantastic candidate who has stood on his record and has been active on all Scottish campuses.”

He also highlighted the work of Kainde Manji, Women’s Officer for two years, and her fruitful partnership with Burns over the course of the 2009/10 term.

Jennifer Cádiz, a mature student at Robert Gordon University, won the depute election unopposed.

Michael Russell, Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning, made an appearance at the conference. He made a pledge not to introduce tuition fees but failed to adequately outline how this would be funded, according to Ross Macrae, who also said the MSP was overtly “party political”.

The NUS UK conference will take place in Gateshead in April.

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