By Simon Ebegbulem
BENIN CITYâ€”THERE is controversy between the authorities of the Ambrose Alli University, AAU,Ekpoma and the former Presidential Aide, Prof. Julius Ihonvbere, over the incident that led to the violent protest by students of the university over the increase in school fees by the Edo State government.
The authorities of the university had alleged that the Professor of Political Sciences instigated the protest when he came to Ekpoma. But Prof. Ihonvbere,Â who described the allegation as â€œwicked and politically motivatedâ€, explained that he was not even at Ekpoma as at the time of the protest but only visited the Irrua specialist hospital to see the three students who sustained gun shot injury during the protest, where he eventually paid their medical bills.
According to him, â€œnow I know that the government is desperate. Such acts of desperation only weakens a government. I am too politically matured to do such a thing. What do I gain? A university that I have helped so much? The current administration of AAU is unfair and ungrateful. I visited students that were shot at the hospital after my meeting in Irrua and offered to pay their bills. I have a right to go any where and visit any one in Edo State.
â€œThe Government is just jealous that people appreciated it. I know that the Governor with his record, would do same if he was on the other side. It is those that planned to increase fees that incited the students not me. Any right thinking person would oppose astronomical increase. I did not incite the students. These are plans to dent my image in the stateâ€, he insisted.
Ihonvbere added,Â â€œI do not incite people, I am an Ambassador of Peace. I have helped that university than any other person in Edo State.â€