The Boar talks to Azzees Minott, Green Party candidate for Leamington and Warwick in the 2015 General Election.
The Boar (Samantha Hopps): Why did you decide to stand as the General Election candidate for the Warwick and Leamington Green Party?
AM: It never crossed my mind to read up about the Green Party before, and when I did I was like “wow! I thought that”. I thought that this could be a really good experience for me, and it became more than an experience…it became really what I believed in. who wouldn’t want to support someone who says “for the common good”?
In a hypothetical situation, as a student, I’m going to the General Election and looking at all the parties available to me. With the Green Party I’d say that the main concern is a certain sense of naivety in the policies. It feels like the Green Party can say these are the things we want to do, and they’re very idealistic, but it’s because the Green Party doesn’t believe that they will be coming into power any time soon and they can make these bold statements.
The idea of the Green Party being idealistic always comes out and is something that is facing us all the time. However, I think a lot of our policies are based on study. I don’t think it is idealistic, as other political parties are picking up on the policies we have and want to do them as well. It’s showing we actually have something here. So it’s not pie in the sky, we’re working off experts in the field.
The idea of the Green Party being idealistic always comes out and is something that is facing us all the time. However, I think a lot of our policies are based on study
Boar: So with the tuition fees, the Green pledge is just to abolish them altogether. Has that been costed and thought out? None of the other parties have put that down as a feasible thing to do despite massive opposition from the student population.
AM: Our manifesto is fully costed. Because the Green Party is fully democratic, we have to wait until we go to national conferences and we vote on different policies, but the manifesto itself is ready and fully costed.
Boar: What do think of Natalie Bennett’s brain fade?
AM: She’s human. I think that just makes her even more human, because she’s not just a polished politician. Not that she’s not a great politician. She’s so inspiring when you listen to her, but it goes to show that everyone doesn’t always have a good day.
I mean, she’s human. I think that just makes her even more human, because she’s not just a polished politician.
Boar: Do you have any specific policies on the graduate job market? It’s obviously a very difficult market at the moment. Is there a way you are proposing to deal with the issues?
AM: If we make it so that education isn’t forced on young people just to do while they’re young, then hopefully it will create a better job market for the future.
I think the whole system needs to be rejigged. So the government needs to look at bringing about better apprenticeship schemes so that people are actually being paid properly to do those training schemes, and you don’t have to go directly to university to get into those jobs. Then the actual jobs market would be about sustainability.
I think the whole system needs to be rejigged.
Boar: What would you do in terms of the school system then?
AM: I think the main thing is they need to stop academies and free schools, because they’re over-privatised, and you’re making it very profit-driven. They also need to make sure they hit targets, improve efficiency and better education for children.
Boar: So you mentioned academies and free schools, what would you do about private schools?
AM: I think private schools need to be left as they are, because that’s the way in which they’re run, however I’m made aware that they are a charity, and they’re not registered as a business and I think they should be a business, because they’re not technically a charity.
Boar: What about grammar schools?
AM: Grammar schools and comprehensive schools I believe is still an issue. The grammar schools that are still in existence, keep them as they are, but you know there’s the idea about bringing comprehensive schools back in again, I disagree with that. Simply because you’re going back to what you had before, which is that people are being taught for the test, to make sure they pass 11+ and only those who could afford to train their children to make sure they pass the test would be able to go and it would create more of a divide
Another green party policy which I really like is cooperation, so all the schools in the local area would go to other schools and learn best practice, and share ideas, instead of competing. If you had better cooperation everyone would be happy to go to every state school there is, because they’re all trying to do best for the child.
Read interviews from the other candidates here;
Alastair MacBrayne and the UK Independence Party (UKIP) declined our numerous offers for an interview and has not supplied any comment.