Tuesday, April 23, 2024

FG sets up Panel on Okpara Varsity students’ protest

From Okey Sampson, Umuahia
The Federal Government has set up Panel to investigate the recent Michael Okpara University, Umudike (MOUAU) students riot.
Students of the institution early last month embarked on wild protest, destroying properties belonging to the university.
This was disclosed by the leader of the Investigation Panel on MOUAU students riot, Prof Ike Nwachukwu while on a
visit to the traditional ruler of Amaoba-Ime Autonomous Community, King Nwankwo Otuwa, on facts finding mission.
Addressing  King Otuwa and some of his cabinet members  at his palace, Prof Nwachukwu said the Investigative Panel was instituted by the Federal Government to find out the immediate and remote causes of the protest.
Speaking after an interactive session with the king and his cabinet members, Prof Nwachukwu expressed satisfaction with the vast knowledge and experience of King Otuwa.
He stated that the Panel members were particularly impressed with King Otuwa’s accomplishments in  education, inventions and retirement as a Senior Executive in USA Hospital.
Responding, the traditional ruler said his community had nothing to do with the recent MOUAU students riot.
While reiterating his firm support for and commitment to the University, the royal father said he believed that the situation would have been avoided, pointing out that there was no need to destroy property of the institution.
On whether the Traditional  had any prior knowledge of the riot, King O’tuwa said he did not have any wind of the riot before it occurred.
On how to engender peace in the university, the royal father advised that funds for land donors be deposited directly with the Central Bank of Nigeria accounts of communities to avoid conflict in a situation where a donor community has multiple Kings.
He urged the University to organize a security committee made up of vigilante of surrounding communities.
A prominent son of Amaoba-Ime Autonomous Community, Prof Ogbonnaya Onuba and the President General of the Community, Christopher Ogwuegbu made case for the university  to make biometric capturing of students more effective to ensure the exercise concludes a week or two before commencement of exams.
The Chief Security officer of Amaoba-Ime Community, Chikaodi Obinna  blamed the recent students’ protest on what he called students accumulated anger against the university administration, threat by cultists for students in early years in the university to get actively involved in the riot among others.