Tension gripped the Yelwa Campus of Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU) in Bauchi, as students took to the streets in a protest that quickly grew fraught. Their demonstration was spurred by the tragic death of their colleague, Joseph Agabaidu, a final-year Geology student. Joseph met his untimely death at the hands of armed robbers, an incident which has not only shocked the university community but has also laid bare the prevailing security challenges.
Joseph Agabaidu had been on his way to his residence in Yelwan Tudu when he was accosted by a gang of armed robbers. A violent altercation ensued, during which Joseph was fatally stabbed. His tragic passing sparked outrage among the student body, leading them to organize a demonstration to voice their anger and grief.
Escalation and Police Involvement
As the demonstration grew in size and intensity, the local police were called in to manage the situation. However, their involvement only seemed to exacerbate the tension. In an attempt to disperse the crowd, the men of Nigerian police deployed tear gas which was met with resistance from the students. They closed the university gates and began singing solidarity songs, transforming their protest into a symbol of unity against what they perceived as an attack on their right to express their grief and demand better security.
The incident has drawn attention to the pressing issue of security, or the lack thereof, in and around the university. The student body's protest is not just a reaction to the loss of one of their own, but a call to action for improved security measures to ensure that such a tragedy does not repeat itself. The Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University finds itself at a crossroads, grappling not only with the grief of a student's death but also with the urgent need to address the security concerns raised by its students.