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Protesting students of the Lagos State University (LASU) literaily took over the office of governor of the state, Babatunde Fashola. The students are protesting against what they termed ‘arbitaary increment’ of tuition by the governor from N25, 000 to N350, 000 and the prosecution of their colleagues yesterday by the Lagos State Police command.
Meanwhile the Human Rights Agenda Network (HRAN), an NGO, on Thursday called on the Lagos State Government to reverse the “arbitrary increase” in the school fees at the Lagos State University.
Mrs Ijeoma Okwor, the HRAN’s Coordinator in a statement in Abuja, condemned police attack on students of the university who protested the over 100 per cent hike in the institution’s fees.
She said that the police had violated the right of the students by using tear gas and canisters against them.
Okwor, who signed the statement, said that the protest by the students of the institution was in exercise of their freedom of movement and expression as recognised by the law.
Okwor, who blamed the protest on hike in students’ school fees, urged the state government to reconsider its decision on the issue in the interest of peace in the state.
“The fundamental rights of citizens as provided in Chapter IV of the 1999 Constitution are sacrosanct and should not be compromised except under the few exceptional situations provided therein.
“Intimidation against citizens by security officers charged with the responsibility of protecting lives and properties does not and cannot reflect a true democratic setting,” she said.
According to her, it has become a trend by state governments to increase school fees of their universities without commensurate effort to improve the standard of education.
“We have noted with sadness that this trend is gradually denying poor students the opportunity to study and make a better life for themselves.”