Mazeed Mukhtar Oyeleye reports,
It is depressing that the efforts of the administration to curb insecurity on the campus is going down the drain. Few days after Pen Press reported that a student was attacked and robbed of valuables on the school premises, another set of students have now been attacked.
“It is unfortunate,” the duo of Muhammad-Jamiu Abdulwahab (100-level, History) and Abdulkareem Abdulwasiu (100-level, Adult Education) sum up their experience in a sentence. They were attacked whilst returning from class, to their residence at Gidan Sule only a few minutes after the twenty-second hour of Friday, 19th February 2020.
“We were returning from (night) class at around ten. We had not covered half the distance between the Central Mosque and our residence at Gidan Sule when we heard the sound of an approaching motorcycle. I advised that we give way for the bike and my friend obliged, only for it to move ahead, and come to a stop about five metres in front of us. The motorcycle carried three of the attackers, of average body build. One of them jumped at us, and I took to my heels to call for help,” Abdulwasiu recounts.
Abdulwasiu ran all the way back to the Central Mosque to call on the people who lived there for help, and they heeded his call, in numbers. He was accompanied to the said spot to find neither the assailants who had absconded, nor his partner, who left his cap at the scene of the attack in his panicky state. However, the sight of the cap stirred up reactions amidst the rescue party, according to witnesses.
A witness Muhammad ‘Adrat’ Adeyemi (300-level, Biochemistry) narrates “we were in our room at the Central Mosque when the young man (Abdulwasiu) rushed in, barefooted. With ragged breath, he informed us that he and his friend were attacked by three men on their way to Gidan Sule where they live. About eight of us stepped out with him and accompanied him to the spot, but we found no one there. A closer inspection of the spot led to us finding a cap which he identified as a belonging of his friend. Although the fact that we saw no blood allayed our fears, we had to shout Abdulwahab’s name to be sure he was alright. I think he heard his name as we continued calling while moving towards their residence, and he came to us.”
“We found Wahab in a perfect physical condition, though obviously shaken by the incident. He narrated his ordeal in the best way he could manage in his frightened state, and we were able to confirm his account as we saw tire tracks leading away from the scene. The school management needs to rise to the task of providing us the security we are entitled to as students of this great institution,” he added.
The victim was quite lucky that the attackers only took away his phone after threatening him with a club, though he fears he could have been injured with another unidentified weapon. He however credited his safety to God, and his prompt reaction to their request for his phone.
In his words “Immediately the attackers moved past us on their bike, one of them jumped off with a big stick. My friend who was behind me ran away, to call for help, but they did not care about him as they still had me. While the armed man asked for my phone, another one of them rushed at me with a weapon I couldn’t really identify in the dark. I thank Allah that I was able to bend over. I promptly handed my phone to them and they left as quickly as they came. I can’t stop thanking Allah for saving my life.”
According to witnesses, the friends begged to be accompanied home as they were terrified by the experience. “When we were close to their place, we turned to go, but they (the victims) begged us to accompany them home, and we did,” another witness Muhammad Ibrahim Isa (200-level Adult Education) relates.
Although the students escaped unscathed, the school management has to brainstorm on more effective measures to ensure the security of the students under their care, in order to end the hapless thread of poignant episodes of students being attacked by armed hooligans, who dispossess them of valuables and/or cause physical and emotional harm to them.
Of Unreported Cases and How it fuels Crime
This reporter after spending hours following up the account of the victims and eyewitnesses, decided to reach out to the security unit. But efforts to get an official statement from them proved abortive as the Chief Security Officer of the University could not issue an official statement on the incident because his unit is oblivious of the unfortunate happenings.
“Nobody reported it to me. How would you ask me what has not been reported to me?” He protested.
This is the case of many other cases on campus that are either underreported or not reported at all. Students should help the security do their job efficiently, by duly reporting such incidents to the security unit. This would arm them with knowledge of the loopholes in their operations, and consequently help in undermining insecurity on the campus.