Monday, 8 October 2012
Aluu residents flee to avoid reprisal attacks over killing of UNIPORT students
by Isi Esene
There are unconfirmed reports that several students of the University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT) earlier on Sunday staged a protest to the the Aluu Community to express their displeasure over the killing of four students of the institution on Friday.
Reports say the students killed lived in an off-campus hostel located in the community.
The students named Ugonna, Lloyd, Tekana and Chidiaka were were accused of stealing laptops and phones. They were stripped naked publicly, severely beaten by a mob and burnt to death using car tyres.
Many observers have condemned the extrajudicial killing of the three student arguing that they should have been handed over to the police for prosecution.
Meanwhile, the Rivers Police Public Relations officer (PPRO), DSP Ben Ugwuegbulam, confirmed that four individuals were killed on Friday at Aluu for allegedly stealing, but could not ascertain if the victims were students of UNIPORT or not.
He stated that the police command was already investigating the incident. He urged students and residents not to take the law into their hands assuring that the police will do all it can to bring the perpetrators to book.
Reports say residents of the community have started fleeing to avoid indiscriminate arrest by policemen.
The deputy registrar of the school, Williams Wodi, said, “Right now, I am not in a position to confirm to you that the alleged victims are bona fide students of UNIPORT, as is being widely speculated.
“The alleged incident took place at Aluu village, about two kilometres outside our main campus. We do not have responsibility for security in Aluu communities, which are beyond our jurisdiction. The relevant security outfits are working with our security department to establish the true identities of the victims and what actually transpired on the day of the reported incident.
“The Dean of Student Affairs (of UNIPORT) is also working round the clock to establish their identities as students of UNIPORT. The university will certainly issue a statement once preliminary facts are laid on the table.”