Video appears to show polling clerk ballot stuffing in RSU election

A video posted online to the DROP RSU Facebook page appears to show a polling clerk inserting a vote into a ballot box at the Ted Rogers School of Management.

In the 11-second video, a clerk can be seen leaning over the table from her seat towards the ballot box. She then folds paper and inserts it into the box. It is unclear from the video whether the paper was a ballot.

A student can be seen texting near the polling station, but doesn’t seem to be in the process of voting as the poll clerk inserts paper into the box.

Fatima Sajan, the chief returning officer of the elections, said in an email, “I am in the process of gathering information and will not be making any statements until I have the full picture.”

There are no Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU) bylaws that prohibit polling clerks from placing ballots into ballot boxes.

A screen capture (Courtesy Facebook)

A screen capture of the video, which appears to show a polling clerk inserting a vote into a ballot box. (Courtesy Facebook)

According to Elections Canada’s guidelines, polling clerks are supposed to instruct voters to deposit their ballot into the ballot box. The guideline also states, “If the elector asks, the deputy returning officer may deposit the ballot into the ballot box on his behalf.”

Polling stations opened Feb. 9 and closed at 5:30 p.m. today at nine locations on campus.

The video was taken by Frank Nyitray, a part-time image arts student in the G. Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education.

In 2012, Nyitray filed a case with the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario against the Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU) and the Canadian Federation of Students. In it, he alleged discrimination based on disability, age and  reprisal or threat of reprisal. The case was dismissed.


by Anuba Thiagarajah

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