Student dies of suffocation while watching match
By Adeola Oladele, Ibadan
Tragedy struck on Wednesday night at the University of Ibadan, Oyo State, when a 200 Level student of the Department of Human Kinetics and Health Education, Muslihudeen Mayowa Alaran, suffocated while watching the European Champions League first leg semi-final match between Barcelona of Spain and visiting Bayern Munich on television.
The sad incident took place at the Independence Hall of the institution.
WESTERN POST confirmed the late student fainted during the second half of the match, eventually won 3-0 by Barcelona, courtesy of late goals from Lionel Messi and Neymar.
According to reports, the Junior Common Room (JCR) of Independence Hall where Alaran and many other students were watching the match was said to have been overcrowded and stuffy, which consequently resulted in his death.
However, students around Alaran were said to have performed a mouth-to-mouth respiration after he fainted, after which he was immediately rushed to the school clinic, Jaja, but gave up shortly after he was given first aid.
Some of the students took to the streets in Ibadan on Thursday protesting the incident. Some student protesters who spoke with WP blamed his death on negligence and lackadaisical attitude of the health centre workers, saying that was not the first time a student has died due to the attitude of the nurses at their health centre.
They claimed they were told by nurses in attendance that they would not attend to the said student unless they presented his clinic card. They added that lack of power supply to the hall contributed to the over-crowding of the room where Alaran suffocated.
One of the protesters who spoke to WP on the condition of anonymity stated that, “I am not saying that the school management should not be scolded for the issue of electricity and negligence of those at the health centre, but I am repeating that the owner of the soul has taken it. We should pray for the soul of the deceased and to Allah to make our returns pleasing to Him.”
While speaking with newsmen, the Students’ Union Government President, Mr. Femi Odesola, said the student had died before getting to the health centre.
But the students who surrounded him when he was speaking to the newsmen violently shouted him down, protesting against the SUG president, saying that he was working for the school authorities to cover what really happened.
They said that on different occasions, the SUG president had betrayed the students when it came to issues relating to the students.
The students who did not allow the SUG president to speak on their behalf to the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Isaac Adewole, demanded that the school authorities should punish the staff who refused to treat the deceased, demanding that ambulances should be provided in all halls of residence and constant power supply also.
When the VC and his men went to the health centre to know what really happened, the staff of the clinic locked the door and denied the VC entrance, out of the fear that the students that followed him might destroy many things.
Policemen and members of State Security Service were on ground to prevent the situation from escalating, as vehicular activities were paralysed, while the aggrieved students took to the street to mourn their departed colleague.
In an interview with WP, the Dean of Students of the institution, Prof. Akinola Alada, sympathised with students and parents of the deceased, while calling on them not to take laws into their hands, by disrupting the peace in the institution and its environs over the death of their colleague.
He said the school management had commenced arrangement within the next 48 hours to set up a committee to look into the issue and proffer adequate solution in order to forestall the recurrence of such unfortunate incident.
However, there was a mild drama when a New Telegraph reporter, Mr. Sola Adeyemo, was physically assaulted by the angry student protesters, while carrying out his official duty.
Mr. Adeyemo, who was severely beaten and whose dress was completely torn by the students while taking photographs of students who mounted road blocks at the main entrance to the institution, was, however, rescued by the policemen on identifying himself as a journalist.