Its twelve years since the July 10 1999 killings at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ife, Nigeria. We reproduce an eye witness eye of the event.
Five students were killed by a cultist gang, that is a neo-fascist type organisation, at Ife University. Our comrades were closely involved in the events and some of them are lucky to be alive, as the gang were looking for some of them. Luckily our comrades escaped.
The following statement is the text of public statement to OAU student by Marxist students’ activists in that campus.
“If a man sleeps too much, he would definitely forget his dreams.”
It is delightful to have a break of few weeks after a stressful Harmattan semester. Thus, you are welcome back, the ever-militant Army of courage. Having defied all subtle efforts to subdue our ‘consciousness’ by University administration under Prof. Michael Faborode cum lukewarm attitude of Union executives, there is need to commend the resilience and militancy of entire Great Ife students. Without much ado, there is need to reflect on some major events that happened last semester, because those who forget their past have consciously mortgaged their future.
Friday, 11 May 2007
Since February 28, the authorities of the OAU in Ife have kept the campus shut down in their desperate bid to repress legitimate protests of the students. The police were brought in on February 26, to force students to write the semester exams! This is in spite of the fact that the students were demanding the legal one-week lecture free period to prepare for the exams. It was actually this crude behaviour that further radicalized the students.
The mobile police (the notorious "kill-&-go") were then used to eject all the students in the most violent manner. Not only were innocent students heavily brutalized, but all members of the university community witnessed numerous examples of brutality. Nobody was spared by the assaults of the mobile police: lecturers, workers, traders, and even those who reside on the main campus have many horrifying tales to tell.
The police brutalized many people, but worst of all was the fire that resulted from their murderous actions at one of the main campus shopping centres. This occurred on March 3, five days after the students had been ejected. The authorities ordered another raid on the campus and anybody seen on campus was brutalized.
"The Lagos State university students' union in conjunction with the NANS zone D and NANS JCC Lagos Axis berate the satanic increment in LASU school fees and the killing of some students of LASU during the peaceful protest against the increment in school fees. And call for the immediate reversal of these exploitative fees as a prerequisite to let the less privilege have access to Education".
These was the first paragraph in the leaflet issued by the students' union alongside with NANS zone D and JCC Lagos in February after the students' protest against the fees, which led to the killing of two students by the police on the command of the Lagos State Government.