BY JOHN IGWE, ENUGU

The reported untimely deaths of students at the Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT), Agbani, have prompted the Enugu State Government to urge a comprehensive inquiry.

It stated that the Governor Peter Mbah administration had always been dedicated to maintaining the institution’s safety and improved learning environment.

During a visit to ESUT, the Governor, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Prof. Chidiebere Onyia, said the government was genuinely concerned for the welfare of students, which is why it decided to look beyond the findings of the Commissioner for Health, Prof. Emmanuel Obi, who had been given the order to conduct a sting investigation of the college and its medical center.

He said Governor Mba is concerned over the development, and “has asked that we come here for a preliminary fact finding mission concerning what we read in the social media”

“He has asked us to find out what is going on with the state of the facilities and the veracity of a few comments made on social media through the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS). So, we have decided as a government, to visit, to make sure that we are open to getting information from students, and from the citizens generally.

“The Governor is very determined and interested in making sure this university reflects the standard of a world class university, and that the health and security of lives are treated as sacrosanct” he said.

He assured that the state government will work diligently with the VC,  the Commissioners for Health and Education, as a team, which will come up with recommendations that can “address any gap identified”

 “We have inspected the facilities now, and from what we have seen and heard, we are clear that the intention behind the social media post may have been to mislead members of the public. But one thing is important, the state government is committed to the safety of lives of students, and to provide them a conducive learning environment” he declared.

According to Prof. Aloysius Okolie, Vice Chancellor of ESUT, some students who lost the July 17, 2023 election for the ESUT chapter of NANS protested their defeat by turning to false information and blackmail against the university.

However, the Vice Chancellor noted that both students and non-students had lost their lives outside the school environment  due to a variety of reasons, including accidents and terminal illnesses, among others.

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