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Students in LUTH protest over armed robbery attacks

Students studying Medicine and Surgery, Pharmacy,Dentistry and other courses at Lagos Univeristy Teaching Hospital (LUTH) protest over incessant armed robbery attacks on their campus. Punch reported that the student locked the gate leading to LUTH yesteday.

 There was pandemonium in the Lagos University Teaching Hospital on Sunday as students of the College of Medicine trooped out to protest against incessant robbery attacks on the campus.

This is how Punch reported it

The campus gate in the Idi-Araba area was condoned off by the angry students, who prevented vehicular movements, while the school security guards were reportedly chased out of the institution.

Our correspondent gathered that the protest started
after the robbers unleashed another attack on some students around 3.30am on Sunday at a mosque, where they usually study overnight.

It was learnt that the incident made it the seventh time that students of the institution would be raided by armed robbers in three months.
In the latest robbery, PUNCH Metro learnt that the robbers, who were armed with knives, machetes, among other weapons, dispossessed students of valuables, including money, laptops, phones, IPods and IPads. It was also gathered that some students sustained injuries during the incident.

A 300–level student, who identified himself simply as Olamide, said a victim had run to the school security officials to alert them to the incident, but was detained.

He added that they were angered by the nonchalant attitude of the security officials and policemen attached to a police post on the school premises.
He said, “A friend of mine ran to the security post at the gate to inform them that robbers had attacked them in the mosque; but they ordered him to kneel down. They beat him up before he was released. That was what escalated everything.

“Two weeks ago, student-doctors were preparing for their primary exams when they (the robbers) struck and robbed them of their laptops, phones and IPad. Some of them had their project work stored in the stolen gadgets.”
A victim, Ololade Bello, who lost his Samsung Galaxy tab to the robbery, said the security of the school was “porous”. He added that students had lodged several complaints to the school management to no avail.
“This is the seventh attack this year alone. We have reported to the school authority, but nothing has come out of it.

“The robbers that stormed the mosque were two. They operated within minutes and fled. They stole my Samsung Galaxy tab. Others lost IPhones, laptops and so on. They came with knives and matchetes. They even passed through the police post to escape. I heard that a student got injured in the shoulder and another sustained injury in the leg.”

Another victim and student of pharmacy, who gave his name simply as Fola, said his phone and laptops were carted away by the bandits.
Fola, who is also a fashion designer, said he was pained by the contacts and documents he had on his gadgets.

A student, who identified himself only as Tosin, said poor power supply in the hostels forced them to study in the mosque.
“This is an examination period and nobody wants to fail. There is no electricity in our hostels and we need to study and charge our phones. The mosque usually put on the generator at night. That is why students go there to study,” he said.

The President, College of Medicine and Pharmaceutical Science Students Association, Folashade Oluwagbemiga, said academic activity would be put on hold until the management improved security in the school.
“We want to know what the management has been doing about the security challenge on the campus. As I speak to you, semester examination is ongoing and someone lost his study materials. How do you expect him to cope? The management is responsible for this sorry state of security.

“The Chief Medical Director, Deputy Provost and other senior officials have intervened. We will re-open the gate as soon as we reach a consensus.”
The students also made some demands which read in part, “The security officers that assaulted the student; Ebube, a 300L pharmacy student; must be brought to justice; the postponement of the ongoing examination by one week; replacement of stolen property of the victims; extending the time of power supply (by generator) from 7pm-10am to 7pm-1am and maximum security on campus.”

The Deputy Provost, College of Medicine, Yomi Okanlawon, said an agreement had been reached between the management and the students.

“We have told the students that we will look into these issues. These are not issues that came up in one day. They are chronic problems that have been there for years. So a 40-year ailment cannot be solved in one day. We have to solve it over a period of time. We must commend the students; they are well-behaved.”
The Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Kenneth Nwosu, confirmed the incident.
He urged the school authorities and students to give information that could assist the police to improve security on the campus.

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