Alleged extortion: FUTO management in court, to defend dismissal of students

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The suit filed by six Students’ Union Leaders (SUG) of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO) against the Vice Chancellor of the institution, Prof. F.C Eze, the Senate, the Registrar and two others as regards the expulsion of the six final year students came up on Friday, 6th of October 2017 at the Federal High Court Owerri, presided over by Hon. Justice Allagoa.

The defendants’ lawyer Barr F.U Onyima filed the defense to the suit and the case was however adjourned for hearing on 17th of October 2017.
The claimants were said to have been expelled from the school as a result of the violent protest embarked upon by the students of the institution against the premature and insensitive increase in school fees and course registration fees. It was alleged that they had embarked on a peaceful protest to meet the Vice Chancellor and other school management or principal officers but the school authorities invited security operatives who threw tear gas at them thereby worsening the situation.
The incident led to the close down of the school for some months after which the students were directed to pay N15,000 each for damages of the school properties. Newly admitted students who were not privy to the protest nor were also, were forced to pay the fine
The plaintiffs’ lawyer Barr. Uche Wisdom Durueke, a Human Rights lawyer while addressing the journalists after the court session said that his interest in the case is the public interest. “It is an issue of significance because it has to do with young ones whose education and future are being threatened with termination by the action of the university. He said that he wants to ensure that the students are not punished outside the law”. A Nigerian he said is entitled to the protection of the law. It is now left for the court to decide if the university followed the law in dealing with the students.


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