Idogho's Second Term: Protests Rock Auchi Poly


For the past few days, the campus of Auchi Polytechnic, Edo State has been rocked by protests following the re-appointment of the institution’s Rector, Dr. (Mrs.) Philipha Idogho by the Federal Government. But for the prompt intervention of policemen from Auchi Divisional Command, there would have been bloodshed.

The protests started with the indigenes saying that since the incumbent Rector is from Etsako North area of Edo State, they wanted an indigene of Auchi to handle the affairs of the institution for the next four years.

They also alleged that her administration has witnessed the death of several lecturers in the school, including that of the former Acting Rector, Mr. Louise Akagbosu, who allegedly died mysteriously.

It was also alleged that her administration sacked some academic staff of the institution without cogent reasons.

Campus Square gathered that the protesters marched through Jattu-Okeke-Benin Expressway before gaining entry into the campus. They were said to have overpowered the school’s security officials and shut the two gates of the school for several hours.

During the protest, the indigenes claimed that Idogho’s tenure has yielded little or no progress in the school, and thereby urged the authorities to remove her without further delay.

They made bonfires and also placed a coffin covered with red cloth in front of the school gate.

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According to an ND II Computer Science student, Faith Ijeoma, “they were chasing students up and down to join the protest against the second term bid. Some of them were on bike with placards. Some were putting on red attires with red berets.”

Meanwhile, another group in support of the rector’s second term in office also staged a peaceful protest in the school premises. The group, under the aegis of Afemai Progressive Youth and the Youth for Better Initiative, both from the Etsako community area, said they are in support of the rector.

Some of the placards they carried read: We want Idogho, Nobody apart from Idogho, Etsako people say yes to Idogho, South Ebie youth say Idogho must stay.

A spokesperson of the groups said: “We want Idogho back because she has done a lot for the polytechnic and the community has been better for it. The newly-built Campus Two, which is now expanded came to reality through her. She sent many lecturers abroad for training. Students received scholarships and award. We want her to continue,” they stated.

Following the rumour that students of the school, led by the students’ union leaders, were against the second term bid of the rector, President of the Students Union Government (SUG), Comrade Osaro Louise has described the statement as baseless. He said the union and all Nigerian students are in total support of the second term.

“Let me state categorically that we are supporting the rector’s second term bid. We stand by her and I urge all Nigerian students to disregard any comments claiming otherwise,” he said.

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