BY ABEL DANIEL
LAFIA—Following a protest embarked upon by students of Nasarawa State University, Keffi, on Monday, it has now been confirmed that at least four students were shot dead while four others were wounded when soldiers and policemen fired live bullets on the demonstrators.
They students carried out the ill-fated demonstration over lack of water and electricity on campus.
The protest started at about 7.30am by few students of Nasarawa State University, at their hostels but it soon escalated and spilled into the streets, according to a student who spoke in confidence to Vanguard.
Sources also told Vanguard that there had been acute water scarcity as public water supply stopped in Keffi for nearly two weeks now, and the state water board blamed power cuts from the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, for the scarcity.
The protesting students blocked some major roads in Keffi, chanting “No water, no road.” This disrupted flow of traffic for hours, until armed security personnel broke up the riot.
At about 8.30am, the university’s registrar, Mamman Dalhatu drove to the scene of the protest in company of the Chief Security Officer, John Aboh, who tried to calm the students.
Later on Monday, the university authorities announced the closure of the campus and ordered students to leave the hostels as contained in a statement signed by the University Spokesman, Jamil Zakari.
The statement read: “For the avoidance of doubt, any student who remains on or around the campuses does so at his or her own risk as security forces have been notified of this closure.”
A spokesman for the Federal Medical Centre in Keffi, Jamilu Nagogo, confirmed to newsmen that six people were brought in with gunshot injuries; one of them already dead while three others died later, with over 15 other injured students receiving treatment at the hospital
State police spokesman, DSP Michael Ada, confirmed that there was shooting but said he was only aware that “two students were injured”.
The university campus had been deserted as at yesterda as soldiers went round the rented apartment near and around the school settlement forcing students to vacate their rooms.