What started as a peaceful demonstration by students of the Nasarawa State University early yesterday morning turned violent when two of them were killed by soldiers from 177 Guards Brigade Battalion, Keffi, drafted to keep the peace. In the aftermath of that, the state Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura ordered the school shut t to avert a further breakdown of law and order.
The students had embarked on a peaceful demonstration to press home their demand for the restoration of water supply to the university community.
LEADERSHIP reported that earlier, the students had barricaded the Keffi-Akwanga Federal Highway from Keffi roundabout to students' village, a distance of about three kilometers. Travelers and other motorists were trapped for several hours and efforts from the university authority to contain the situation through persuasion did not yielded much result after which the military were called upon but some of the students protested their presence and started throwing stones at them at which point the soldiers were forced to open fire.
Speaking on behalf of the students, the President of Students Union Government (SUG), in the institution, Mr. Rabiu Tijani Omameh of the Department of Accounting said for about three weeks students have borne the burden of water shortage on the campus, and added that "water is life without which we cannot continue with our education and it will make the environment harsh and hectic for us".
A cross section of students who spoke to our reporter said that shortage of water has been a recurring problem in Keffi but the past three weeks have been the most excruciating as most of the wells dried up.
A 200 level student of psychology, Magdalene Omaku, said "students cannot find water to take their bath or cook and we have been trying to make our feelings known to the school management and we hope that the government will come to our aid and do something."