Ogun shuts varsity over threat to peace

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In Nigeria
Aug 24th, 2014
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To forestall a breakdown of law and order, the Ogun State Government has ordered the closure of the Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU), Ago Iwoye.

The government also advised all parents whose wards are students of the university to call them to order, as the government will not tolerate any act capable of disturbing the peace being enjoyed by the people of the State.

In a statement signed by Barrister Taiwo Adeoluwa, Secretary to State Government, it said that the decision to close the university was taken in the overall interest of peace and order, as the students of the university have continued to issue threats, while rejecting all entreaties and concessions made by the government on their various demands concerning the recently announced reduction of school fees.

After extensive consultations with relevant stakeholders, the state government on August 12 announced reductions in the school fees by 61 percent in all the 10 state-owned tertiary institutions.

The government also abolished the indigene/non-indigene dichotomy in the school fees regime and announced the 2014-2015 academic session as commencement period for the policy.

However, while students in nine of the ten institutions commended the government for its decisions, OOU students insisted that the new school fees regime should take effect from the 2013/2014 academic session and that the fees should be further reduced.

The students premised their position on the fact that they are currently running the 2013-2014 academic session which will end in January.

OOU students subsequently staged a violent demonstration in Abeokuta, the state capital on August 15 until the personal intervention of the governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, which restored normalcy.

But intelligence report available to the state government later has it that student leaders of the institution were alleged to have sent text messages around  urging their colleagues ‘to get ready for action’.

Security reports indicated that because the students are allegedly acting under external influence, no concession made by the state government will be satisfactory to them.

“Consequently, we have no option than to order the immediate closure of all the campuses of Olabisi Onabanjo University to protect the students and other residents of the state and their property. We urge all parents to impress on their wards the need to maintain peace in the interest of all”, Adeoluwa stated.

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