Soldiers ‘assault’ ASUU chairman in ATBU
At the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University’s Yelwa Campus in Bauchi State on Monday, students rampaged to vent their rage over the reported attack of Dr Ibrahim Inuwa, the chairman of the academic staff union at the university, by some military personnel.
It was learnt that the incident happened when a convoy of two military vehicles approached the campus but were halted by university security because their cars had tinted glasses.
Despite this, it was reported that the troops broke inside the university grounds, but the lone security guard at the gate resisted, which led to the soldiers harassing him.
Inuwa arrived at the scene and inquired about what transpired, only for the soldiers to assault him.
After learning of the harassment of the ASUU chairman, students at the college asked that the troops be turned over to them so they could be “disciplined,” almost precipitating a serious crisis.
The troops were driving a Toyota Camry and a Toyota Corolla when the students barricaded the exit gate and closed the two entrance gates while hurling rocks and other objects at the vehicles.
In the end, they deflated the tires on the two cars, smashed their windscreens and glasses, lights, and other components.
Inuwa described what transpired to media by saying that he was leaving the school when he noticed the troops intimidating the security guard who was on duty at the gate. He then stopped to find out what was going on.
He claimed that after approaching the troops to inquire about what was going on, one of them inquired about his identity and began verbally abusing and pushing him.
“Just this (Monday) night, some few minutes after 8 o’clock, I was going out of the university and I saw a convoy of two vehicles, they were busy arguing and harassing the security man on duty.
“At that time, most of the security men were praying in a mosque by the gate. So I had to stop because it is my responsibility as the chairman of the Union.
“And I asked our security man in Hausa what was happening. The next thing, these guys in these two vehicles started asking me arrogantly ‘who are you?’ And I told them ‘no, I want to know what happened’. One of them said, ‘you’re very stupid! Do you know who we are? You’re very stupid!’
“I told them that this is a university and we have our rules and the next thing, they started shoving me, then one of them went to the extreme and slapped me three consecutive times.
“I called their attention that what they have done is wrong and I told them they would regret it. You can even see the prints of the slaps on my face,” Inuwa explained.
He added that, “they said again that I was stupid because I was still talking. They were hitting me that I should keep quiet. It was at that point that the number of security men increased, so we instructed them to block the gate because we must know their identity.
“They are claiming that they are military guys but to give us their details is now a problem. They were on mufti and they forced their way into the university. Our Union is now aware of the incident and we need their details to write to let the Chief of Army Staff know about it.”
The ASUU chairman lamented that what the soldiers did was to break the institution’s protocol, saying that no one could break the military protocols like the soldiers did to the university.
He added that senior army officers who later arrived at the scene sought to take the five soldiers away to handle the matter in their own ways.
Also speaking with journalists, the National Internal Auditor of ASUU, Adamu Babayo, said he was at home when he was informed that some soldiers came to the school and slapped the union branch chairman.
He said the school’s security man was right to have prevented the soldiers from entering the institution as it has its rule of banning vehicles with tinted glasses from entering its campus.
According to him, “when I got to the entrance gate, I inquired about what was going on. While the security man there alone was trying to tell them that they cannot go in, they were forcing their way into the campus.
“Luckily, the ASUU chairman was going out and he demanded to know what was going on. Then these military boys harassed the chairman to the extend that they even slapped him.
“Our students came at the gate trying to lynch the military boys. So the chairman said they should lock the gate, so that they don’t go out and the students will lynch them.”
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