The Nigerian Law School, Bwari, Abuja, has expelled a student, Kayode Bello, after he allegedly had an argument with a fellow student, identified simply as Chidima, over seat reservation in a lecture room.
Bello, a graduate of University of Ibadan, Oyo State, was reportedly bundled out of the school’s library by law school officials and policemen attached to the Bwari Police Station on the day he was expelled.
According to Punch, Bello’s issue with the school management started shortly after he gained admission into the institution in November 2016.
It was gathered that he complained to the Secretary to the Council of Legal Education, Mrs. Elizabeth Max-Uba, over the leakage of the sewage pipe in his room’s toilet.
He said he also reported to the secretary that the water system in rooms in the hostel was not functioning, adding that his complaints were not attended to.
The 34-year-old explained events which led to his expulsion starting from March 15, 2017, when he went to the class for a morning lecture.
“The class is usually overcrowded. There are no enough chairs in the lecture room and we have issues over seat reservation. At a point, the Head Marshal, Mr. Akinyemi, announced publicly that there should not be seat reservation again because it was causing problems.
“That day, I met Chidima and other persons sitting on some chairs. There was a book on a vacant chair. As I made to sit on the vacant chair, Chidima said she was keeping the seat for a student. I said I would leave when the person came.
“When the lady came 20 minutes later, Chidima angrily told me to vacate the seat. I told her that her approach was wrong. In the process, a marshal came and took both of us to Mr. Akinyemi’s office. He asked me to look for another seat. I made him to realise that he was the one that gave an order on seat reservation, but he ignored me.
“I went to report the matter to the school’s Chief Security Officer, Mr. Ogunboyan, but he was not in the office. I called him on the telephone and he asked me to be patient, saying he would address it when he came back.”
Bello said the CSO took him to Akinyemi later that day and the Head Marshal complained that he (Bello) was rude.
Bello said both officials flared up at that point and Akinyemi threatened him with a query. He stated that he immediately submitted a petition on the issue at the secretary’s office, adding that she did not acknowledge it.
He said he also sent the same petition to the email of the Nigerian Law School without getting a reply.
He said Akinyemi announced the query in the class the following day and gave him a copy, which he replied to.
“I also made my response known to the class. He issued the query and signed it on behalf of the Dean of Students’ Affairs, which is wrong,” Bello said.
He said the officials suddenly turned the matter against him, accusing him of inciting students against the school management, adding that his room was inspected on March 20, but nothing incriminating was found.
Bello explained that the Students’ Representative Council was also influenced to issue a disclaimer against him.
“On March 21, the CSO and the Head of Academic Affairs, Mr. Osamolu, came to my room in the midnight and forcefully evicted me. I paid over N300,000 as school fee, of which N60,000 was for hostel accommodation. They handed me over to policemen at the school’s police post. When I explained what happened to a policeman, he was surprised. He gave me a space to pass the night.
“When I returned to the hostel the following day, I met the door of my room broken, while my bed had been taken away. I reported at the Bwari Police Station, but a policewoman I met there requested money to buy a case file, which I declined to provide.
“My lawyer wrote to the secretary about my victimisation, but she didn’t reply. I also petitioned the Public Complaints Commission, which wrote to the Nigerian Law School.
He said he kept sleeping in the open room until they went for externship (attachment to law firms and courts) in April 24, adding that his application for hostel accommodation during the programme was rejected by the school.
When contacted on the telephone, the CSO directed Punch correspondent to the Secretary to the Council of Legal Education.
Asked what actually led to Bello’s expulsion, the Secretary, Max-Uba, said the management would issue a statement on the issue on Monday (today).