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The day of the jackals .Students and school authorities trade blame as cultists invade female hostels, raping and robbing them of their belongings

Posted by Yinka Oladoyinbo, Akure on 2005/07/09 | Views: 513 |

The day of the jackals .Students and school authorities trade blame as cultists invade female hostels, raping and robbing them of their belongings


Friday June 17, 2005 will continue to linger in the memory of the management, staff and students of the Federal College of Agriculture, Akure as the day they lost a member of the community to an invasion by robbers/cultists.

Friday June 17, 2005 will continue to linger in the memory of the management, staff and students of the Federal College of Agriculture, Akure as the day they lost a member of the community to an invasion by robbers/cultists.

Apart from the life that was lost, a number of the female students will also continue to remember the night as the nightmare of their lives because the invaders raped them so violently that some of them later landed in the hospital.

Staff and students of the college had the previous day performed their routine duties after which they all retreated to their residences, majority of which were located on the campus of the college along Akure – Ado-Ekiti road.

At the going down of the sun, some of the students, particularly the ladies, took time off to attend one religious activity or the other, preparatory to a Christian programme billed for the later part of the month. The rehearsals and other fellowship programmes had taken them to as late as 11 p.m. when some of them began to return to their hostels. Then the unexpected happened and they began to run helter skelter for dear lives.

Unspecified number of men in masks and black attires invaded the campus and descended on the two security guards attached to the female hostel. The two men were tied with rope and subjected to merciless beating because they had attempted to prevent the invaders who they suspected were robbers, from carrying out any dastardly act.

During the duel with the invaders, one of the security guards, Mr.Kayode Adeyemi, was stabbed in the head following which he died instantly.

But that was just the Act 1 of the tragic drama. Thereafter, the evil men pounced on the female students from room to room in a commando style. Their targets were the money, mobile phones and private parts of the hapless ladies.

Saturday Punch learnt that some of the students had earlier in the week been paid their N10, 000 allowances for their participation in Industrial Work Experience Scheme. While some of the ladies had used their money to buy mobile phones, some were still holding on to the cash, with the aim of travelling to their various homes that fateful Friday.

However, giving a graphic account of the events of that bloody Friday, the Coordinator of the Committee for the Defence of Human Right, FECA Chapter, Mr. Olufemi Bolodeoku, said the invasion was the sixth to be witnessed since last year.

He said that the invaders started the operation around 12 midnight and were on the campus for almost three hours before one of the ladies was courageous enough to put a call through to their male counterparts to come and rescue them. However, before the boys could reach the girls’ hostel, the invaders had left the scene through the bush path on the campus.

Bolodeoku explained that no fewer than 16 ladies were violently raped by the robbers, who also carted away their handsets and money. Those that resisted the overtures of the hoodlums were said to have been seriously wounded. After the two and half hours operation, about 15 of the ladies were hospitalised on account of the injuries they sustained during the attack.

However, a female student, Miss Esther Isaac, who saw it all but claimed to have escaped being raped, told Saturday Punch that the hoodlums went from room to room and demanded for the three things – money, phone and sex from the ladies. She said that the hoodlums entered the hostel at about 12 a.m and left at 2.30a.m. Isaac, who is the vice president of the National Agricultural Technical Students Association, said that stern-looking masked men entered her room and demanded for money.

It was also gathered that some of the ladies that were having their monthly menstruation had to remove their pads and displayed them to the hoodlums before they could let them go. Those in this category however paid for their “sin”, as they were said to have been seriously dealt with by the lustful invaders, who poured vituperations on them for menstruating during the operation.

However, those who were unlucky not to be having the monthly ‘ritual’, were raped until some of them started bleeding.

Sadly, it was not a story that any of the victims was willing to tell as they all braced up to the reality and acted as if nothing happened.

A visit to the campus the following morning saw pants, bra, boxers and bloodstains resulting from the violent rape and matcheting of the students littering many parts of the female hostel. The situation, however, almost led to violence on the Akure-Ado-Ekiti road that day as angry students barricaded the major road and prevented vehicular movement for almost two hours.

It took the intervention of the men of the Ondo State Police Command before the students could allow traffic to flow on the road.

Some of the students however blamed their predicament on the management of the school. They alleged that concerted efforts were not made by the management to beef up security around the large expanse of bushy land hosting the campus. They also argued that the distance between the female hostel and other buildings on the campus, and the bush that has taken over the space had made the ladies prone to attack by the hoodlums.

However, the school management disagreed with the students, saying it had been working round the clock to ensure security of lives and property on the campus. According to the Registrar of the college, Mr. Ademola Adebisi, the college authorities increased the number of security men attached to the female hostel from one to two to further beef up security around the girls. He said, “This is not the first time we are witnessing this type of attack, it is the third time and we noticed that we needed to reinforce security around the girls hostel, and this we have done”.

Consequent upon the attack, authorities of the school has ordered the closure of the institution for three weeks. The step, according to Adebisi, was to enable the authorities review the security network around the college and also relocate the ladies to a safer area within the campus.

But the State Police Command has categorically stated that the attack was not by armed robbers, but was organised by student cultists within the school. The Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Adeniran Aremu, an Assistant Superintendent of Police, told Saturday Punch that preliminary investigation pointed to the cultists as the masterminds of the attack.

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