OAU VC Appointment: Protesters Storm Campus, Beat Security Guards, Destroy Millions Items
Trouble started last week after the governing council boss of the university pronounce professor Bamire as the new Vice-chancellor of the
The Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife was on Monday threatened as protesters who forced their ways into the main campus beat some security operatives and wounded some staff of the university.
There was total vehicular obstruction as all entrances to the university, such as Sabo, Lagere, Enuwa, Sabo and Mayfair, were blocked. Ife indigenes expressed their displeasure over the new appointment, saying that an indigene of the ancient town could have been appointed instead.
They argued that it was unfair that none of their sons had been a substantive head of the institution for over 60 years of its establishment. The protests broke out on March 17, when the institution’s governing council announced Mr Bamire’s appointment.
The Indigenes who had laid siege at the entrance of the university as earlier as 7:00 am of the day, destroyed the campus security posts and gave those manning the post a hot chase.
They staged protests last week and barricaded roads in Ife township while the entrance of the university campus was also being affected with their hard line posture.
Traffic jams were caused and motorists were prevented from moving to and from in the vicinity. However, Monday’s situation became tenser and protesters said to have moved from one classroom to the other to unleash terror on them.
Also, in the company of the ife indigenes were the traditional worshippers who were in their regalia to protest the non consideration of their son as the vice chancellor of the university.
The traditional worshippers who wore white attires, with white beads on their wrists, were armed with horsetails (Irukere) and they were mostly Osun worshippers as they were repeatedly echoed Ore Yeeye o.
Their priests were seen waving the horsetails in front of the Senate building of the university and sang different traditional songs to invoke the spirits of Yoruba deities whom they called to take over the situation. The traditional priests and their followers were seen dancing and displaying their own evil magical powers to scare those around the vicinity away.
The development, however, left stakeholders of the institution to run helter-skelter for their lives while some had to hide in secret places so as not to be victims of brutality. The situation became tenser and protesters said to have moved from one classroom to the other to unleash terror on them.
One of the workers who simply identified himself as Adesola told our reporter that, he manages to escape when they invaded the school campus and pledged not to return to the place until the crisis goes down.
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Adesola who wondered while the protesters could go berserk to the extent of not having mercy on those working in the university environment, called on the concerned authorities to work hard to address the situation, which he claimed could snowballed to life claiming if care is not taken.
Meanwhile, palpable fear is now imminent among residents students and those living in the staff quarters of the university as they are now in perpetual fear of the unknown.
Speaking on the development, the Public Relations of the university, Mr. Biodun Olanrewaju told our reporter that, the institution followed due process in its selection for the new Vice-chancellor and wondered why the development could lead to an unbelievable action.
According to him, the selection process was fair, free and perfect and every stakeholder in the university including outsiders.
The president, Ife Development Board (IDB), Lawrence Awowoyin, appealed to the federal government to intervene on the appointment of the new vice-chancellor. Mr Awowoyin said that appointing another non-indigene as the VC was an unfair act against the ancient town and its adjourning communities.
Ife has competent and qualified candidates that can be appointed for the post, so we Ife community do not agree with the announcement. It is an insult on us that after 61 years of OAU, they dimmed it unfit to appoint or to elect any of our sons.