New allegations are being made regarding Kimo Gandall, one of the ASUCI judges listed in the recent petition written with the goal of recalling ASUCI judges Joshua Wolfe, Logan Knight, Nick Ortiz, Heriberto Mendez, Madison Craw and Gandall himself.
A source, who wishes to remain anonymous, claimed that in the College Republicans at UCI (CRUCI) Discord group chat, Gandall stated “transphobic, homophobic words, and everyone was okay with it.” The CRUCI Discord group chat is currently being moderated by Gandall.
In the CRUCI Discord group chat, anonymous user NextGen mentioned that they were a transgender Republican. Koeng101, one of the other anonymous participants in the group chat, commented that “[t]ransgenderism is a mental illness.” The chat took a turn for the worse when Koeng101 told NextGen not to mutilate themselves.
Koeng101 went on to comment that “there’s some good psych wards out there” after NextGen mentioned that they would rather leave the conversation because they felt uncomfortable. One of the more serious comments was when Koeng101 said, “You’re making it sound like God didn’t offer rights; which means the government can take away your natural rights. Which means you have no real rights. Retarded athetist take, founders would lynch you.”
In a video of the Discord chat provided by the anonymous source, Koeng101 was seen saying that “[t]his is a pretty accurate view of mine on recent events.” Koeng101 then included an attachment that linked to a Chairman’s fire side chat, where Gandall is seen sitting to the right, and then said that it was “pretty fun, considering I was like six glasses of bourbon in while filing this,” seeming to imply that they, the user Koeng101, are Gandall.
When being interviewed by the New University about his view on transgenderism, Gandall commented that he is against someone changing their body if they are below the age of 12 because of the health implications.
A different anonymous source also shared their concerns about Gandall’s comments on a different communication platform, Slack. In an image that they shared from ASUCI’s Slack group, Gandall commented, “Ah yes, comrades, I bet our next shot at communism will work if we just get our gender pronouns right.”
The ASUCI Slack group was started by 2020-21 ASUCI President Michelle Mallari but is not being overseen directly by administration.
In an interview with the New University, Gandall responded to the allegations by saying that his ideology does not affect his ability to interpret the ASUCI bylaws.
Gandall said that “[the] political theatre that is surrounding ASUCI incentivises students to blame each other.” He went on to say that “[t]he only rule of the judge is to interpret the law.”
However, the two sources seemed concerned that his comments show that his ideology is in fact affecting his work. Some of the examples they gave included the comments being made about transgender people as well as the COVID-19 Relief Bill that was unable to pass. In addition to this, the sources were afraid for their safety after having experienced their friends getting kicked out of the ASUCI affiliated group chats for speaking up against Gandall.
One of the other concerns brought up by one of the sources is that the COVID-19 Relief Bill has not passed because of Gandall’s affiliations. This issue was brought up in the recent petition that was started by Henry Vu, a second year nursing sciences student. Vu stated that “[t]he COVID bill was going to give students that were in need extra funds.”
Gandall said in an interview with the New University that, “We have obstructed every piece of legislation, as long as their legislation does not go against the bylaws.” To clarify, Gandall said that the laws that are not passed are laws that do not adhere to the ASUCI bylaws.
Another anonymous source, however, claims that, “As a member of the judicial board, [Gandall] has ‘overturned’ senate legislators just because he didn’t like them, one of which was us following a university directive to fix the budget to comply with UCI policy. We worked with the administration to create the new budget so it 100% was compliant.”
The source’s stance is that Gandall’s ideology prevents bills that adhere to the ASUCI bylaws from being passed.
The source also said that in order to remedy the issue, “ASUCI should make positions like judicial board elected, because the appointment process encourages corruption, in my opinion, in the case of major positions like judicial board and senator.”
ASUCI Student Advocate General Isabelle Lee, a fourth year social ecology student, is trying to remedy this situation by implementing accountability measures within each branch of ASUCI. Complaint forms will be more accessible to students and the Chief Accountability interns are each being assigned to a branch of ASUCI in order to ensure that there is full transparency in it’s operations.
“My Chief Accountability Officer Wiley Wilson and his team are implementing new transparency and accountability rules. For example, the Chief Accountability interns are assigned to each office, where they help improve accountability measures within each office,” Lee said.
In addition to the new accountability measures being implemented, Lee is also working on making the complaint form more accessible to students. This is important because there was a previous incident last year where a student was kicked out of an executive session by UCIPD. The particular student felt as though it’s unfair that students are not considered a member of ASUCI until they have paid their student dues; this meant that their petition signatures were seen as invalid by the ASUCI Judicial Board. The complaint form will allow students to express concerns without having to call authorities.
“My Internal Student Advocate General, Jenna Lee, and her team are working on making the complaint form more accessible to all by redrafting the questions, creating one-pagers explaining the various ASUCI governing documents and making the complaint form easier to find,” she said.
As of Dec.18, Kimo Gandall has been impeached. There will be a recall meeting week five of spring quarter that will address the petition asking to recall ASUCI judges Gandall, Wolfe, Knight, Ortiz, Mendez and Craw. The exact date will be decided under the discretion of the ASUCI Elections Commissioner.
Magaly Bravo is a Staff Writer. She can be reached at email@example.com