Reports from the Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT) in Agbani, Enugu, have revealed a growing wave of anxiety due to an alarming number of unexplained student deaths in recent weeks.
Sources have indicated an increasing death toll which has prompted an outcry from the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) demanding an immediate halt to all activities at the institution.
In a statement released on Thursday night, the NANS Zone F coordinator, Comrade Chidi Nzekwe, expressed profound concern and disappointment at the frequent and tragic student deaths at ESUT. He pointed to evidence of negligence by the university administration, including the lack of functional student clinics as a contributing factor to the tragedy.
The NANS leadership has issued a directive for the immediate suspension of all university operations from August 24, 2023, until further notice. This step, they believe, will enable broader discussions with key stakeholders, including university management, healthcare professionals, security agencies, and student representatives.
Rev. Godwin O Onah also echoed the shutdown calls on social media, urging both the state and federal governments to act promptly to prevent further loss of life.
Despite these concerns, the Public Relations Officer of ESUT, Mr. Ikechukwu Ezianioma, stated that the ESUT student body has dismissed the NANS letter. The President of the ESUT Student Union, Mr. Donatus Okolieuwa, confirmed this, stating that there were no plans to close the institution.
Efforts to reach ESUT Vice Chancellor, Prof. Aloysius Okolie, have been unsuccessful, however, another university staff member confirmed the reports of the deaths, adding that the state government is already addressing the situation.
IMAGE: Nairaland Forum