Thursday, 23 July 2015
Outrage In OtuOke, Former President Jonathan's Hometown
The Punch reports that some aggrieved youths of the state, shut down Federal University, Otuoke, during a protest.
The youth were said to have been angry due to what they described as ethnic discrimination going on in the school. They demanded that indigenes be appointed into management positions in the federal university.
They alleged that the Vice-Chancellor of the institution, Prof. Mobolaji Aluko, is playing ethnic-ism as none of the principal officers in the university was from Bayelsa state.
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The youths, numbering about 200, carried placards as they converged on the main campus of Federal University Otuoke (FUO) in the early hours of today, Wednesday, July 2, 2015, locking out staff and students of the school.
Although the protest was peaceful, most business operators closed their shops for fear of hoodlums who might want to take advantage of the protest to perpetrate evil.
Some of the inscriptions on the placards read, ‘Bayelsa youths say no to change of principal officers from Bayelsa’,
‘Registrar is not a Bayelsan. He is short-changing Bayelsans’, ‘Leave our woman bursar alone. We need equal representation in the management of FUO, Otuoke’, ‘IYC declares war if bursar and librarian are changed’, and ‘VC and registrar must go now. Enough is enough’.
Richard Lawyer, the President of National Union of Bayelsa State Students, who led the action, said they were using the peaceful protest to send a strong message to Aluko and the school management.
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He said: “All sensitive positions in this university are occupied by non-Bayelsans. This is not right. And it will not happen in our time.
“What is happening in Federal University, Otuoke will define the future of Bayelsans. But Bayelsa State students, youths and women leaders will resist it.
“We are not happy with the way the VC and his people have been running the affairs of the university. We are warning everyone of them who is behind this marginalization to stop. “Even if the bursar will be replaced, her replacement must come from Bayelsa.”
But the registrar of the institution, David Suowari, who spoke on behalf of Aluko, denied the allegations of the protesters. He said the authorities of FUO had no hand in the appointment of any principal officers, adding that all such appointments were done by the Federal Government.