Bankole Taiwo, Abeokuta
The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) and National Association of Ogun State Students (NAOSS) on Tuesday alleged that Ogun State Police Command and Rector of the Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, Dr. Olusegun Aluko, conspired to frame the President of the Student Union Government (SUG) of the institution, Adegboye Olatunji, with an unfounded cult case.
It would be recalled that the embattled SUG President of the polytechnic, Adegboye Olatunji was about four months ago reportedly arrested for cultism alongside one other person. The police had in the press statement stated that both the students’ leader and the other suspect are members of Black Axe and were arrested during the meeting of their cult group at Ilaro in Yewa South local government area of the state.
NANS and NAOSS have however claimed that the Polytechnic’s Rector, Dr. Aluko, instigated the arrest of Olatunji by the Ogun State Police Command in connection with cultism.
The leaderships of NANS Joint Campus Committee in the state, Bamgbose Peters (JCC) and Ogunrombi Oluwagbemileke(NAOSS National President) claimed that the arrest and subsequent suspension of Olatunji were acts precipitated by his call on the Rector to account for an alleged anti – students policy at the Polytechnic.
The leaders of the two students bodies who spoke in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, during a press briefing, also lamented what they described as the “disturbing and disappointing role” of the Ogun State Police Command in Olatunji’s travails.
The student groups said it was saddening that the Command could collude with Dr. Aluko to frame up their colleague with cult related matter.
There had been palpable anxiety and fears in the camp of the students over the safety and whereabout of the suspended President of the Federal Polytechnic Ilaro Student Union Government, Comrade Adegboye Olatunji, after he allegedly sent a frightening note to a Whatsapp group on Saturday.
Sensing that the their colleague was apparently reacting to frustration from the suspension, they, therefore, called for an unconditional reinstatement of Olatunji pending the outcome of an on-going investigation by the Police \
According to them, the suspension and the attendant psychological trauma visited on him, was pushing Olatunji to the point of commiting the unthinkable with his life.
They also noted that the manner of the arrest, detention and suspension of Olatunji, a Banking and Finance student, from the Polytechnic, was a flagrant assault on his fundamental rights and negates the principles of fair hearing.
“It is not only sad that the police colluded with the Rector to frame the SUG President, but also pathetic that the Police in Ogun State could be involved in a conspiracy to destroy the life of this innocent young man.
“We have been able to established that the cultism allegation trial was an attempt by the Rector and some management Staff of the institution to frame up our colleague in the struggle, Adegboye when all attempts to cow him against raising some fundamental questions about the anti – students policy of the management of the Institution yielded no result.
The management of the institution suspended him without giving him the opportunity to defend himself in line with principle of fair hearing as guaranteed and enshrined under Section 36(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).
“As students leaders in this state we will continue to resist any attempt or calculated attempts to turn us to stooges in the hands of our institutions management as we will continue to defend the interests of our Students at all times in all fronts. We will equally fight this deliberate effort to destroy our Comrade as we have been able to ascertain in our fact-findings.
“We hereby call for the immediate and unconditional reinstatement of our colleague pending the outcome of the on-going investigation by the Ogun State Command of the Nigeria Police Force. As his suspension is psychologically affecting him of which was equally responsible for the attempt by him to commit suicide some days back.
“Failure to reinstate him shall be met with full resistance by the leadership of all Students Union in Ogun State because we cannot allow our institutions management to be intimidating and victimising us because we ask for accountability of resources accruing to our in institutions covers,” they said.
But the Ogun State Police Command has dismissed the students’ allegation as “frivolous, unreasonable and an attempt to pre – empt” the Court’s outcome on the matter.
Speaking through the Command’s Public Relations Officer, Abimbola Oyeyemi, it urged the students bodies in the state to allow the court process to run its full course on the issue.
Abimbola, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), wondered whether the Rector of the Polytechnic or the Police dressed their colleague up in a cult regalia and took him to the bush where he was arrested during cult initiation.
Abimbola reminded NANS and NAOSS leaders that Olatunji has been charged and arraigned in court, urging them to allow the Judiciary to run its full course on the case.