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Published On: Tue, Aug 27th, 2019

Benue varsity: Why we transferred shot student leader to Abuja -Official

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•As students protest his ‘maltreatment’

From Uche Nnorom, Makurdi

The National Union of Benue State Students, NUBESS yesterday protested the poor handling and treatment of its National President, Comrade Smith Tyonor, who was shot by unknown persons in Makurdi.
Comrade Smith according to the Benue State University authority where he is a 400 level psychology student was shot last Friday at about 9 pm outside the University premises and admitted at the University Teaching Hospital.
Dean Students Affairs of the institution Prof. Joseph Kerker who narrated how the incident happened said Smith was shot by two (2) riding on a motorbike.
“Two (2) persons came on a motorbike where they were holding a meeting opposite the University and a fracas seemed to have ensued. The men inquired what was happening and then went a little distance and shot Smith on the head.
“The next day(Saturday) I went to the hospital to see him but heard a lot of complaints from the Students requesting that he should be transferred to another hospital in Abuja. I arranged for an ambulance from First Fertility Hospital even as we learnt that Governor Samuel Ortom had already released an undisclosed amount of money for his treatment. The hospital authority after conducting a test on Smith said he passed 14% over 15% indicating that he was in a stable condition. There was improvement on his condition when I visited again on Sunday.
“On the same Sunday night, the students became agitated, complaining of poor treatment and security of the victim. So, we decided to transfer him to Abuja based on Security and have even spent over 300,000 naira so far on his treatment as well as gave his parents another 100,000 naira for any exigencies”, Prof. Kerker said.
The Students Affairs Dean said though the University is not obligated to handle any incident that occur outside the school premises, however, they are investigating the purpose of the meeting that led to shooting of Smith and out rightly denied claims that it could be cult related. He intimated that they have put in place stringent security measures to deal with cult activities in the institution.
A student leader, Comrade Robert Faga explained that all they are demanding from the management is to transfer the victim to a secured hospital.
Faga said the student leader was not a cultist and was also not shot by cultist but rather claimed it might be sponsored by other factional NUBESS union group.
“We are protesting because they shot our president and the school is not taking any drastic action towards that. They said that they shot our president outside the school campus.
“We want the school management to take care of his treatment and security because he is not in a secured place. They are not giving him full attention. “he fumed.
He said the issue is a security one and needed to be treated with all seriousness, adding that BSUTH lacked proper security to guarantee the victims safety.

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