Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 8, No. 8 June 27, 1945
The Chairman asked the Secretary to reply to those allegations—"I demand the right of reply!" said Mr. Hartley. "We shall be here to one a.m." warned the Chairman. ". . . and ready to stay till next year, to see justice!" avowed Mr. Winchester. Amid assertions and counter assertions, right of reply was vouchsafed.
Mr. McDowall stood, diffidently. "I shall pass over many of Mr. Hartley's remarks as unworthy of reply." (Groans, boos, cheers and interjections). "Concerning Rostrum, the statement concerning the 'social content' demanded by the Editor of contributions is correct. We wrote to Mr. Cohen asking that a report on proposed publicity be submitted—the letter was not even acknowledged." Mr. McDowall answered other minor points to the moderate satisfaction of the meeting. "Much time and care was spent in compiling this report (A voice: "Obviously!") and it was completed two weeks before nominations closed."
Mr. Cohen: "At the time of my appointment as Publicity Officer, I was in the Army; moreover, I was neither consulted about nor notified of the appointment. The letter referred to by Mr. McDowall never reached me—I might ask where he addressed it"
Mr. Dowrick, claiming to be the oldest member of the Association present (a claim disputed by Mr. Sansum), held the report to be thoroughly indecorous. "It reeks of adolescence. In my day, when there were men at this college, men such as Jack Aimers, Bonk Scotney, Nesblt Sellars, and others, such a document would never have been passed."
Mr. Taylor opposed the adoption of the report on two grounds. First: it should be purely factual; thanks should be given, but not undue adulation. Second: "Although I feel that the damage has been done, no precedent for such a report must be allowed; it must be returned for amendment."
Mr. Winchester: "I object to the report on grounds of taste and phrasing and as it contains several untruths it is impossible to believe that it has been passed by the Exec as a whole. Had it been, I am certain that Mr. Campbell would have, out of embarrassment, erased those portions eulogising him, and that the slanders directed at Mrs. Fowler and others would have been exposed."
Mr. Winchester also asked why the Liberty Loan campaign, started two days before the election, was not mentioned, while the hanging of pictures in the Men's Common Room, also two days before the election, was.
Mr. Fowler asked the meeting to note the extreme care which had been taken in the compilation of reports in Salient on the various nominees. "Has this care to avoid misrepresentation been taken in the Annual Report?" he asked. Salient is classed as material likely to influence votes, and as such was constitutionally barred from distribution on polling days. Oh these days the Exec. report, far more likely to influence votes, was available in the Exec. Room. Mr. Barr:—"A decision that this would be permissible was made by the full Exec."
Mr. Daniell made the point that the Report, according to constitution, must be available for seven days prior to the annual meeting.