Academic activities at the Ekehuan campus of the University of Benin, UNIBEN, were on Monday, grounded following a protest by students of the institution over an alleged shortage of water due to a power outage in the school
JUNGLETALKER reports that the Institution has been without electricity for the past two months, leading to the shortage of water supply to student’s hostels.
The students, following the hardship and difficulty encountered in sourcing water outside the campus, early Monday morning locked the school gates barring academic and non-academic staff from gaining access to the school.
The students also ocked out staff and students of UNIBEN Consultancy Schools, a co-education secondary, primary and nursery school owned by the school authorities.
It was gathered that the protesting students had gathered at the University’s main gate and padlocked the gate to prevent people, including off-campus undergraduate students from going in and out of the campus.
The students vowed they would not open the gates until electricity is restored, noting that they have been patient enough with the management of the university to do the needful.
According to the protesting students, the lack of electricity supply has also resulted in a lack of water on campus as there was no light to power the water boreholes.
JUNGLETALKER also gathered that as of 8am, students of the UNIBEN Consultancy Schools were seen going back home on the directives of the school’s Director, Prof Ofuam James Ilaboya.
The students were, however, surprised to see that light was restored while being addressed by a senior official of the university.
Reacting to the sudden supply of power, a student who spoke on condition of anonymity said, ”Can you see them? They are enjoying that we have been suffering without light and water.
If not that we embarked on this protest now, the management will not know that they have to do the needful to make the learning environment conducive for us after we have paid school fees”, he said.
With the restoration of the electricity to the campus, the students, however, opened the gate and subsequently announced the immediate suspension of the protest with a promise to resume if the situation does not Improve
All efforts to speak with relevant authorities of the university were unsuccessful as no official was willing to speak to newsmen.