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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Sunday, May 19, 2024

BREAKING: TCU Judiciary overturns ECOM decision, reinstates presidential candidate

The three-way election is back on after the candidate acknowledged violating one campaign rule.

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The Mayer Campus Center is pictured on Dec. 5, 2023.

Editor’s note: Caroline Vandis is an alumni liaison at the Daily and also the chair of the TCU Judiciary. Vandis was not involved in the reporting, writing or editing of this article.

Joel Omolade will be allowed to appear on the TCU presidential ballot after the TCU Judiciary overturned the Election Commission’s decision on Thursday to disqualify him, the Judiciary announced in an op-ed Monday afternoon. After two hearings on Sunday, the Judiciary voted unanimously to reinstate his candidacy, having found that ECOM failed to uphold due process in its investigation of campaign rule violations.

The Judiciary ruled that Omolade “engaged in solicitation of a club’s endorsement in exchange for personal favors” related to his role on the TCU Allocations Board, Omolade wrote in a statement posted to Instagram. He maintained that he never recieved the endorsement or suggested that the club would have an easier funding process due to his influence.

“I abided by the budgeting and parliamentary manuals but suggested they meet with me in advance of their proposal, under the assumption that this was within my rights as an ALBO member,” Omolade wrote. “While I stand by my decisions, I completely understand the Judiciary’s verdict. … Additionally, I pledge I will never entertain such conversations in the future.”

ECOM expressed regret at its handling of the campaign rule violations and affirmed the Judiciary’s ruling in a statement released on Monday afternoon.

“Our intentions were always to adjudicate this unprecedented situation as fairly as possible, giving the candidate the benefit of the doubt and the best possible ability to defend themselves. We acknowledge that we fell short in this area,” ECOM wrote in an Instagram post. “We wholeheartedly agree with the Judiciary’s decision and intend to follow through with their recommendations to improve our process for the Fall and future.”

ECOM will postpone both the presidential debate and the election by one day in light of Omolade’s reinstatement. The debate, between Omolade, Krystal Mutebi and Mikayla Paquette, will now be held on Wednesday at 8 p.m. in Joyce Cummings Center Room 270. Ballots will be open from noon on Thursday to noon on Saturday.