There was a bloody clash between residents of a host community and the students of Tai Solarin University of Education, Ijagun, Ogun State, leaving four houses burnt.
Violence broke out in the Imaweje community around Ijagun, Ijebu-Ode when a 300-level student, yet to be identified, was reportedly killed by the community.
The community was alleged to have accused the deceased of being a cultist.
News of the student’s death reportedly filtered into the school and students’ residences which led to reprisal by his schoolmates who stormed the community.
They reportedly invaded the house of the community leader and set it ablaze while other chiefs’ houses were also torched.
The community leaders were said to have fled the community for safety while the students that lived in the community were said to have also deserted their houses.
A resident who spoke with our correspondent confirmed the attack on the community leaders, saying the whole community had been deserted.
The source, who pleaded anonymity, said the crisis was escalated by some students believed to be cultists, who, he said, claimed to be protesting against the death of one of them.
The source said, “The crisis started on Friday but escalated today (Sunday).
“He was beaten by the community for being a cultist. He was left after he was beaten, but, when he was taken to the hospital, he was already pronounced dead.
“So, the students became angry and went on a rampage to the extent of setting ablaze the building belonging to the baale of the community and other houses which served as students’ hostel.
“As of the last count, four houses have been set ablaze.
“No death recorded apart from the student. And the whole place has been deserted.”
When contacted the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, SP, Abimbola Oyeyemi confirmed the incident.
Oyeyemi said some students suspected to be cultists beat two students for refusing to be initiated by them.
He stated that the student after he escaped reported the incident to the community and in the process of searching for the suspected cultists, they caught one and beat him up and took him to the village head.
“The Baale ordered that they should take him to hospital and on the way to the hospital, the student died.
“The news filtered into the students who then went to the Baale’s house and burnt it. They also burnt a bakery and others.
“As it is now, the situation has been brought under control. The school authority has closed the school. The police and soldiers have been deployed there.
According to Oyeyemi, the soldiers were drawn from Ilese to join their men to ensure the security of lives and property.
“The security agents have to maintain the security of that place till tomorrow or next tomorrow till the students vacate the area. So our men are on the ground they have been joined by military men from Ilese barracks. The situation has been brought under control.”
Meanwhile, the management of the institution has announced the closure of the school and asked the students to go home till peace is restored.
The registrar of the institution, Dapo Oke, while confirming the incident, said there was a clash between some students living in Imaweje community, around the school and the residents of the community.
He said, “Following the recent clash between students and members of the university host community in the early hours of today (Sunday), particularly, the Iwameje community, which led to the eruption of violence, the university management hereby announces the closing down of the university.
“In the meantime, parents and guardians are hereby advised to recall their wards, particularly those living in and around Iwameje back home immediately.
“Efforts are being made with law enforcement agents to restore peace and order in the community affected.”