The West

Guild chief saw no one misbehave
Guild chief saw no one misbehave

University of WA guild president Matthew McKenzie was at the February orientation camp at the centre of underage binge drinking and sex assault claims.

But Mr McKenzie said he was there for one evening and did not see any of the behaviour causing UWA major embarrassment in Australia and overseas.

"I remain deeply concerned about the issues raised and regard the reported behaviour as totally unacceptable," he said.

UWA vice-chancellor Paul Johnson has threatened to withhold guild funding and asked it to investigate the claims, which became known to the university in March.

The guild was also preparing new guidelines for orientation camps, if there were any more, which included no service of alcohol if there were students under 18, Professor Johnson told 6PR radio yesterday.

The National Union of Students said the UWA scandal should be a wake-up call to all universities.

"As horrible as the stories out of UWA are, they're similar to those from other universities," NUS women's officer Noni Sproule said. "The only difference at UWA is that they're coming out in the media."

She said it should not take a front-page story to prompt action.

At the three-day camp near Dwellingup, senior students pressed drunken 17-year-old first-years to vomit so they could drink more. There were reports of public sex, free condoms and a sex assault.

The scandal is threatening UWA's reputation overseas, with at least Indian news websites reporting it. UWA attracts more than 4000 international students every year.

The West Australian

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