Reject SWP hijack

May 25, 2007

It is rarely stated but widely known that bodies such as Unite Against Fascism and the Stop the War campaign are Socialist Workers Party front organisations. So it was refreshing that Robert Lockie (Letters, May 11) should pull no punches in expressing concern at the encroachment of such organisations on the University and College Union.

While Malcolm Povey (Letters, May 18) may have got "the second-highest vote in the higher education section" of the elections, his fellow SWPers and fellow travellers failed miserably in their attempt to take over key posts.

The vast majority of UCU members want their union to focus on pay and working conditions, not the kinds of issue that are the legitimate concern of political organisations. This was made clear in 2005, when a storm of grassroots protest forced a reversal of the Association of University Teachers' national conference commitment to an academic boycott of Israeli universities.

It is disturbing to see that those who wanted the boycott are at itJagain.

It is to be hoped that this further attemptJto hijack the union will be rejected in the forum that is supposed to represent its membership, the national congress.

Howard Moss
Swansea University

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