By Ike Uchechukwu
CALABAR—A 500-Level student of Electrical Engineering of Cross River University of Technology, CRUTECH, identified as James was shot dead, yesterday, by suspected cultists, while writing his first semester examination in Calabar.
The incident, which has caused fear on campus, occurred at the Old Engineering Block, CRUTECH, Calabar Campus.
An eyewitness, who pleaded anonymity, told Vanguard that James was shot three times, but as he did not give up the ghost immediately, his assailants hacked him with an axe to ensure he died on the spot.
The source said: “After hearing gunshots and being alerted that a student had been shot dead at the Electrical Engineering Department, some lecturers in the Civil Engineering Department made a mild announcement in the exam halls, where Civil Engineering 500-Level students were writing their final paper.
“They told all cult members to either leave the hall quietly or bear the security risk themselves, as there was no security presence at the time of the incident.
“They got up, submitted empty sheets and left. Some even forcefully collected exam sheets from their colleagues in order to leave in groups.”
Vanguard also learned that some cultists, wearing black vests, later invaded the school looking for members of the rival gang that perpetrated the act, in a possible reprisal.
Contacted, Cross River State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Irene Ugbo, confirmed the incident, saying the Divisional Police Officer, Efut Division, had deposited the corpse in the mortuary.
Her words: “I am aware that a final year student was gunned down by suspected cultists at CRUTECH. His corpse has been deposited at the mortuary by the DPO of Efut Divisional Police Station.
“Investigation has already started and we are carrying out a covert operation as we speak. I learned it is cult related; supremacy tussle among cult groups and their hierarchy, but we will get to the root of the matter.”
On his part, the Public Relations Officer of CRUTECH, Mr. Onen Onen, said he was not in school when the incident occurred and did not have details of the incident, because he was bereaved.