The Vice Chancellor of University of Benin, Prof. Lillian Imuetinya Salami, has tendered an apology to the students.
She was also said to have also agreed that no student would be punished or victimised for taking part in the protest, especially for making her walk from her official lodge to the university’s main gate.
The apology was contained in a statement signed by the university Registrar, Mr. Ademola Bobola.
The statement read: “After due consultation, and in the overall interest of the general students’ body, the Vice Chancellor has, on behalf of Senate, apologised to our dear Students.
“This is based on security reports from the Department of State security (DSS) to avoid the students’ action being hijacked by hoodlums; and thereby prevent any form of breakdown of law and order within and outside the campuses of the University.
“Accordingly, students can login into their Kofa page as the extra charges has be reversed. Please disregard any message stating closure of the university before 12:00 noon.”
Earlier yesterday, aggrieved students of UNIBEN had ignored the order of the University Senate closing down the school as they continued their two-day old protest over the hike as penalty for paying tuition fees late.
Although the university management had on Tuesday announced the temporary closure of the institution claiming insecurity and the possible highjack of the protest, the students remained adamant.
Rather than complying with the vacation order from the campus, the students marched to the official lodged of the Vice Chancellor, Prof Lillian Imuetinyan Salami, and practically held her hostage. They had forced the professor of Food and Nutrition to walk from her official residence to the university’s main gate on the Benin-Lagos road, on foot.
The protesting students made several video recordings of the Vice Chancellor, trekking the long distance.
When they got to the Engineering Faculty, the visibly exhausted VC pleaded that she should be allowed to complete the journey in a vehicle.
It was learnt that while a Toyota Hilux was provided for the remaining trip, the students, however, deflated two of the four tyres of the vehicle.
“At the end, the vice chancellor was not accorded the luxury of riding in the demobilised vehicle alone, as some of the students jumped into vehicle with her to ensure that she did not escape,” a source had disclosed.