NUS president to stand down

Aaron Porter has endured a difficult relationship with student activists during the tuition fees campaign
Aaron Porter has endured a difficult relationship with student activists during the tuition fees campaign

By Ian Dunt

The president of the NUS is to stand down amid widespread attacks on his leadership.

The student leader, who has spearheaded official opposition to the rise in tuition fees, was given the unenviable task of trying to prevent violence during demonstrations while still launching a robust campaign against the policy.

Aaron Porter will step down at the end of his current term, saying the campaign is "moving into a different landscape".


The 26-year-old faced calls for his resignation from the right after the first student protest resulted in the destruction of a reception area at Tory party HQ in Millbank.

But the worst attacks against him came from students themselves, after the union leadership failed to properly back occupations and unofficial marches.

By the time of the vote on tuition fees, a small group of around 200 demonstrators were attending the official NUS rally on Embankment while tens of thousands of protestors protested unofficially in Parliament Square.

The absurd difference in turnout led some activists to openly wonder whether the official student union had become sidelined by its cautious approach to the campaign.

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