Union President resigns

first_img“The measures I have proposed include a full, public, and independent review of the Union’s policies in respect of disability, to be conducted with the assistance of the Disability Advisory Service. We as the Standing Committee have taken immediate action to publicise a disability policy, but we must recognise that this problem requires intensive and expert review. I have proposed a professional review of how the Union trains its staff, particularly whether the current security system is fit for the purpose of a student society. I have proposed regular equalities training, on a termly basis, for the Union’s staff and committee, with the aim of fostering a culture of respect and inclusion. “The new Acting President, Sara Dube, must immediately do so. We will continue to push for meaningful reform and look forward to discussing this with the Acting President.” In his resignation statement, released on Tuesday evening, McGrath said: “Fundamentally, it is the President’s job to ensure that every Member feels welcome at the Oxford Union. This is a goal I have manifestly failed to reach. For all my shortcomings, and all of my mistakes, I apologise profusely and unqualifiedly. Harry Hatwell, who raised a Point of Order immediately after the incident to ask for an investigation and also recently gave evidence in defence of Mr Azamati, brought the impeachment motion to members. Hatwell and Nwamaka Ogbonna, President of the Oxford University Africa Society, told Cherwell: “We are glad that the President, Mr Brendan McGrath, has made the right decision to resign. The fact that nearly 300 students signed the impeachment motion today shows how important these issues are to the Union’s membership. “From start to finish, managing the response to Mr Azamati’s eviction from the No Confidence debate has been the most difficult thing I’ve ever been charged with. I was asked, on the basis of accounts from those present, to bring a disciplinary complaint against Mr Azamati on behalf of a member of staff. I was advised that this was my responsibility as President: to represent the staff in an area in which they cannot represent themselves. This obligation to the Union’s staff is integral to my Office, but I should have recognised a wider obligation. “The right response would not have begun with prosecution and apportioning blame, it would have been addressed immediately in the extreme distress of all involved, and pursued constructive solutions to the institutional problems highlighted. “We are aware there is still much more work to be done. The Union has still not publicly apologised for the incident or arranged for an investigation. center_img “The society cannot recover with one resignation. I trust that you, and future members of the Standing Committee, will follow through on these measures earnestly.” Oxford Union president Brendan McGrath resigned on Tuesday evening, issuing a public statement. McGrath was widely condemned for his treatment of Ebenezer Azamati, a blind postgraduate student, with the events attracting scrutiny by international media and numerous politicians. McGrath’s resignation comes after the resignation of the Secretary, Chengkai Xie, the Director of Press, the Director of Operations, the Chief of Staff, two members of Standing Committee and a member of the Secretary’s Committee, amid calls to resign from the incumbent Librarian and Treasurer. A motion of impeachment against McGrath on Tuesday morning reached the required 150 signatures needed for an vote in a matter of hours. “I can only hope that my relative public silence is not interpreted as being uncaring, or taking the matter lightly. My priorities have always been to make this right, as far as that is possible, in Mr Azamati’s eyes; to address his concerns personally; and to ensure that the Union body understands what has happened, and takes comprehensive action to make the Union a society which its Members can be proud of. I have not wanted to make a statement which would endanger those ongoing discussions with Mr Azamati. This is a breaking news story: more to followlast_img read more

Morrisons completes on Ocado deal

first_imgMorrisons has announced the completion of its agreement with online retailer Ocado Group, which will see Morrisons.com commence online deliveries from next January.The agreement comprises a technology and services arrangement, and a sale and leaseback of property and equipment at Dordon.The deal was approved by Ocado’s shareholders at a General Meeting on 18 July, and completed on 25 July 2013.Morrisons had announced in March this year that it was in talks with Ocado, as it looked to move into the online retail channel in 2014.The deal does not involve Morrisons acquiring any kind of equity stake in Ocado.last_img

Vermont Yankee tritium leak still sought

first_imgAccording to a statement from Entergy Vermont Yankee Sunday night, the source of the tritium leak has not yet been definitively identified nor has the status of the situation changed much at the Vernon site. Vermont Yankee engineers and technicians continue their investigation into the source of tritium in the plant s groundwater.The last inspection of the Advanced Off Gas concrete pipe tunnel using a boroscope revealed little change in conditions over the past week. Any water in the tunnel continues to be collected in a sump and removed.  Plans continue to test for leakage paths to the ground from the tunnel floor using pure water. This will help determine if and where the tunnel theoretically may be leaking water into the ground. This test will be performed after excavation exposes the tunnel floor so that technicians might be able to observe any leakage paths. Water used during the test will be collected and processed through plant systems.Tritium concentration monitoring is ongoing.  Contingency plans to relocate well (GZ-10) located in the excavation area are underway in the event that the excavation affects the ability to use this well. Engineers and vendor experts approved the design of the engineered shoring for excavation work yesterday and excavation in the AOG area commenced last night. The design assures protection for workers and accounts for nuclear safety. As the excavation proceeds, shoring is being installed to hold back the dirt wall to prevent the possibility of a cave in. As of noon today, the excavation has reached the seven foot level. Sunday afternoon, workers expect to excavate down to 11 feet. At that point, excavation will stop temporarily so that additional cross bracing can be welded in place. An engineered solution to capture potential leakage encountered at the unearthed AOG tunnel has also been prepared if it is needed. The enclosure above the excavation area is in progress and will be completed after the shoring is moved into place and excavation has reached 15 feet. The installation of the two new deep monitoring wells is complete and they are in the process of being developed (GZ-13D and GZ-14D). Digging for two additional shallow groundwater monitoring wells continues. The information from these new wells will help engineers and hydrology experts better understand groundwater flows beneath the site. While this investigation continues, it is important to note that there has been no tritium levels found in any samples taken from drinking water wells or the adjacent Connecticut River.For more details on the tritium investigation, the Vermont Department of Health has a thorough status report on the investigation at this web link: http://healthvermont.gov/enviro/rad/yankee/tritium.aspx(link is external)Source: Vermont Yankee. 2.21.2010last_img read more