Student union says it will not reveal results of investigation into officer who allegedly used antisemitic slur

By Naomi Firsht, March 17, 2016
Theo Robertson-Bonds

Theo Robertson-Bonds

A student union which investigated one of its officers who referred to a fellow student as a “Zio”, says it will not release the results of the probe.

Edinburgh University Student Association launched the inquiry, after Ada Wells, the convener of the Edinburgh University Students Association LGBT, used the abusive term to refer to union presidential candidate Theo Robertson-Bonds.

Ada Wells made the remark in a tweet which read: “Is anyone here to represent RON [re-open nominations] for pres? The Zio and the apolitical appropriator just arrived.”

She has since apologised on Twitter and deleted the tweet.

The union started its investigation after it received complaints.

It told the JC: “We can confirm that, in response to student complaints, EUSA conducted an internal investigation into alleged antisemitic comments made online by an elected student representative. This investigation has now been concluded. No further information will be released on the basis of confidentiality.”

Mr Robertson-Bonds, who is one of the vice-chairs of Edinburgh students Israel Engagement society and who is not Jewish, said: “I was pretty disgusted by it. Not just by the fact that someone chose to use a horrific slur to describe a political situation that they don’t agree with, but also that someone in our union came out with that using an election hashtag and it went unchecked. It’s baffling that someone can get away with that.”

Mr Robertson-Bonds failed in his bid to become union president, losing out to the only other candidate.

Ada Wells told student newspaper The Tab: “It is obvious to anyone that Jews and Zionists are distinct groups – my grandmother was a Christian Zionist and close friends of mine are Jewish and pro-Palestinian. I was not aware that the term “Zio” was not simply a shortened from of Zionist, and I apologised when I found this out. Theo and I have discussed it and there is no animosity over it.”

Last updated: 9:43am, March 18 2016