The 177-year-old institution is mired in its second embarrassing controversy of the year.
The Oxford Union has been blasted for doling out wodges of cash for top-celeb speakers, including DJs and glamour models.
An investigation by The Oxford Student has shown that the society have spent sizeable amounts on bagging juicy speakers for its debates and talks including Jodie Marsh, MC Hammer, and Robinson’s very own Nick Clegg.
Pampered personalities charged up to £187 for taxis, £603 for accommodation and appearance fees of almost Blair-ite proportions, forking out a whopping £700 to audacious millionaire and former Italian PM Romano Prodi.
Shockingly, committee members also entered claims that would have made even the greediest MPs blush including one student charging £1,000 for designing the Union term card and last year’s president claming for 34 taxi rides between the Union and her home.
Having shelled-out £207 on membership this year, Oxford students reacted angrily to the news: “I can’t believe that they’re frittering away our money like this” Magdalen College student Max Mills told TCS, “it’s an absolute outrage”.
Asked about the Cambridge Union’s record on expenses, Head of Press Alexander Küng told The Tab: “‘While one of the Union’s main expenses are travel costs for speakers, we actively seek to minimise these.
“The officers’ concern in this regard is to run good events but also to adhere strictly to our budget and not engage in extravagant expenses. Moreover we strongly recommend all members attend our annual open business meeting on the 1st of November, during which we present the details of the recent society audit.”
The procedure for their Oxford counterparts has evidently been less transparent, with officers being accused of withholding crucial receipts from investigators for up to five months.
The controversy comes less than a month after the institution was tainted by the news that its president-elect had been reprimanded by Morgan Stanley for searching the company’s system for a “good strip club”.
Some at the 177-year-old institution might be questioning the wisdom of the saying “there’s no such thing as bad publicity”.