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George Osborne was at UoM yesterday and people were not happy

Protesters blasted Lily Allen’s ‘Fxck You’

Former Tory Chancellor George Osborne visited the University of Manchester yesterday to speak on "what makes a country strong" at an event in Whitworth Hall.

Protesters gathered outside the event, blasting Lily Allen's Fuck You at an incredible volume whilst Gideon's speech took place. They also came equipped with placards, banners, megaphones, and drums.

Widely regarded as austerity's biggest champion, George Osborne was appointed Honorary Professor of Economics at UoM last year. UoM's Students' Union condemned the appointment at the time as a violation of the University's Social Responsibility policy.

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Image credit: Save Our Staff MCR

Yesterday's protest was jointly organised by two groups; Save Our Staff MCR, a student group supporting University staff, and 'BDS UoM', calling for the University to cease all involvement with the arms trade.

Taking place at UoM's Whitworth Arch on Oxford Road, the protest followed two others at the same location exactly one week previous, when students protested outside a University Senate meeting.

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Image credit: Save Our Staff MCR

A spokesperson from 'Save Our Staff MCR' told The Tab:

"The protest was small but lively. Between songs & chants, we heard from a variety of speakers. SOS Manchester, BDS Manchester, Deej Malik-Johnson (Campaigns Officer) were all represented. Additionally, Piers Wilkinson came from the NUS Disabled Students Conference to speak about the Tory attacks on disabled people, in which Osborne is complicit.

"We heard really positive feedback from people passing the demo. Several people stopped to give words of support, and most were shocked to hear that Osborne was in Manchester. The event was advertised only to Social Sciences postgraduates; a lecturer from the same department had not been aware the event was happening. We have not seen any mention of the event from UoM or George Osborne's social media channels. We think it's odd that the University would invite two Honorary Professors to Manchester with so little publicity – perhaps they know that his presence is an embarrassment to the institution?

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Image credit: Save Our Staff MCR

In a statement read on behalf of Students' Union Campaigns Officer Deej Malik-Johnson, he branded George Osborne's visit as "an inglorious day for our university inviting a dinosaur of the political establishment, a man responsible for an economic doctrine that has left thousands homeless."

He continued, saying that: "This man has left carnage, heartbreak, poverty, desperation and death in his wake and for him to be honoured by our university honestly makes me physically sick, we must fight this pathetic neo-liberal sycophancy and opportunism wherever it raises it’s ugly head because friends, comrades, we have no choice if we are to have a country that is not only strong for the likes of George and Nancy [Nancy Rothwell – UoM Vice-Chancellor] but for the rest of us as well."