Akuma (middle) being dragged by students
By Timothy Agbor, Osogbo
The tension on the campus of Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife on Tuesday, 2nd December, 2014 took a severe dimension as some students apprehended and beat to coma a fellow student, Rapheal popularly called “Akuma” for inflicting serious injury on their colleague, David who is currently receiving treatment.
The students accused Akuma of being the leader of the cultist group that attacked them on the night of Sunday, 30th November, 2014.
Among the five students that sustained degrees of injuries during the clash is David, a Part 5 student of Environmental Design Management (EDM) of the university who is currently receiving treatment at the Seventh Day Adventists’ Hospital in Ile-Ife.
Other students who sustained minor injuries and are members of the Education Rights Campaign (ERC) of the campus are: Sanyaolu Oluwajuwon (Com. Juwon), Microbiology, Part 4; the former Chief Security Officer of the Students’ Union, Ibirogba Samuel (Sammie), Electrical Electronics, Part 5; and Olubanji Oluwole, (Engel), Philosophy, Part 4.
It could be recalled that rival students on Sunday, 30th November, 2014 engaged themselves in a bloody clash leaving no fewer than five students severely injured over Friday, 28th November, 2014 visit of President Goodluck Jonathan to the campus.
President Jonathan was on campus for the Southwest Summit where he was endorsed by some traditional rulers and political leaders in Yoruba land for his 2015 re-election bid.
The president’s visit however sparked crisis on campus as majority of the students of OAU staged a protest against what they termed “decay in the education system in the country”; they booed and called president Jonathan thief.
To this end, the leadership of the students’ union was said to have expressed displeasure at the manner with which the students staged the protest thus causing a rift between student union leaders and some notable students who led the protest.
The rival students’ groups had engaged themselves in a bloody clash where two of them identified as Godson and Akuma were said to have supported the students union leaders by inflicting injuries on the five students on Sunday night.
But on Tuesday, 2nd December, 2014, the aggrieved students stormed the examination hall situated at the humanity block of the campus to arrest Akuma, who was said to be in his extra year and was writing his paper.
It was a tug of war between men of the Nigerian Police and the students who insisted that Akuma must be brought to Awolowo Hall of the university for necessary actions.
The students were able to drag Akuma to the said Hall where students were already waiting eagerly to behold. After interrogation, Akuma revealed that he hit David on his forehead in self defence during the clash.
The students accused Akuma of being the leader of a cultists group called “Alora” saying that he should be punished to according to the tradition of the students.
While the interrogation was going on, the Dean of the Students Affairs (DSA), Mrs Yinka Durosinmi stormed the Awolowo Hall alongside other members of the security committee of the institution expressing her displeasure at the manner the students stormed the examination hall to apprehend Akuma urging them not to take laws into their hands.
But the students were adamant as they booed the Dean and other members of staff on her entourage before they left in anger.
At the gathering which witnessed hundreds of students mostly male, it was agreed that Akuma be given 50 lashes of belt at Awolowo Hall wile he receives 10 lashes each at other seven hostels comprising of Mozambique, Angola, Moremi, ETF, Fajuyi, Akintola and Alumni halls of resident of the campus.
But there was confusion at the Awolowo Hall when Akuma fainted while receiving his punishment. The student chosen to flog him had only given him five lashes of belt when Akuma went unconscious with blood coming out of his nose.
However, some students hurriedly sprinkle pure water on him and appealed to the students to make a way for him to feel freeze. Amidst the confusion, some students murmured that Akuma only pretended to had fainted.
About five minutes later, he regained consciousness and was paraded round the hostels by the students who kept on beating him.