Protesters demanding the reinstatement of rusticated students’ union leaders at the University of Lagos, Akoka Campus, blocked the entrance to the institution for several hours on Monday.
According to the PUNCH, the development forced the university management to lock the institution’s gates, in a bid to prevent the protesters from entering the campus. Some police officers were also posted outside the gate to prevent the breakdown of law and order.
The protesters, acting under the aegis of the Lagos State chapter of the Joint Campus Committee of the National Association of Nigerian Students and the Alliance of Nigerian Students against Neo-liberal Attacks, blocked the school’s entrance, causing a long queue of students and vehicles on both sides of the gate.
It would be noteworthy recall that a protest by students of the university in April, 2016, allegedly led by some leaders of the union, resulted in the rustication and suspension of 11 union leaders. The students were said to be protesting the poor supply of water and power at the time.
Carrying placards with various inscriptions on Monday, the protesters, under the ‘Save UNILAG Coalition’, said it was unfair to rusticate the students’ union leaders for demanding an improvement in the welfare of students.
Secretary of the coalition, Ayowole Sanyaolu, said, “We are not violent in our approach, but this is to expose the excesses of UniLag administrators to the public and see how 11 students were rusticated for protesting poor water and power supply on the campus. We will not relent until they are reinstated.”
However, the Deputy Registrar, Information Unit of the university, Mr. Oluwatoyin Adebule, said that the protest had no effect on academic activity on campus.
In a statement obtained by our correspondent, Adebule said, “This is to inform the general public that the University of Lagos students are not protesting. The gathering outside the university gate consists of rusticated students and allies. They had charged the university to court and the case has been struck out. Let me assure you that lectures are ongoing without any form of disruption.’’