The 2017/18 academic year has been jam-packed with controversies surrounding students' unions and Presidential candidates.
After a turbulent beginning to semester one in UCD, it now seems another SU Presidential candidate, Breifne O'Brien, has become embroiled in a controversy. According to the University Observer, the SU presidential candidate is being accused of making incendiary, and possibly homophobic, comments to another student at the UCD student bar during orientation week.
During semester one, O'Brien - the current Ag, Food, and Vet Officer - was called into a meeting with sabbatical officers to discuss the comments in question. The student concerned initially brought O'Brien's comments to the attention of the SU once that person became aware of his position within the organisation.
O'Brien has denied making homophobic comments, according to the University Observer, but acknowledged that a 'debate' had taken place between himself and the student in question.
During a previous interview with the paper regarding his candidacy, O'Brien had said that were he elected president he would "absolutely" take part in Pride as SU President.
Collegetimes have attempted to reach O'Brien for further comment, but he has not yet responded.
It is not the first time in recent months that SU Presidents and candidates have come under fire. In 2017 Katie Ascough was impeached by the students of UCD after removing abortion information from the freshers 'Winging It' handbook. In Trinity, a front-runner for TCDSU President Sean Ryan was accused of sending sexually explicit messages by a student but, according to Junior Dean Tim Trimble who investigated the claim, there was no case to answer to and no further action to be taken.