Students at the Bayelsa State-owned Niger Delta University held a peaceful protest against the institution’s management’s intentions to implement uniforms.
On Monday, students reportedly marched around the Amassoma campus, shouting solidarity songs and demanding an end to the proposal.
The NDU administration was claimed to have devised a strategy to combat “indecent clothing,” particularly among female students on campus.
The placard-carrying undergraduates resumed their demonstration on Tuesday, denouncing the closing of the fees portal for old students as well as the continuing prohibition on the operations of the Students’ Union Government, which they described as an intentional attempt to stifle student unionism.
Some of the students, who requested anonymity for fear of being targeted by the NDU administration, also called on Governor Douye Diri to fire the institution’s Vice-Chancellor, Prof Samuel Edoumiekumo, who is seeking a second term.
Edoumiekumo’s actions were deemed absurd by the pupils, who also said that the adoption of school uniforms was a symbol of authoritarianism and blatant dictatorship.
They alleged that engineering students would pay as much as N30,000 each for their uniforms, while students of other faculties would pay N20,000 each.
Edoumiekumo had in June come under attack over discrimination against a physically challenged man, who was a deputy bursar of the school, which sparked a protest.
The physically challenged man was reportedly denied the opportunity of appearing for an interview for the position of the bursar and remained suspended following the protest although Diri addressed the management on the development.
The Public Relations Officer, NDU, Idoni Ingezi, explained that “the closure of the fees portal is a policy of the school,” but maintained that it was still open for this session.
Ingezi denied the institution had fixed fees for uniforms, saying that discussions were still ongoing at departmental levels.