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students panic in Ibadan poly over bushy environment and lack of hostel

Students of the Polytechnic, Ibadan, Oyo State, are yearning
for cleaner surroundings and hostels, OLUFEMI ATOYEBI,
who visited the institution, writes
Established in 1971 from the facility left behind by the old
University of Ife, now Obafemi Awolowo University, The
Polytechnic, Ibadan, boasts being the alma mater of many
prominent Nigerians. Many of them are indeed captains of
But age is fast telling on the institution, especially its
physical infrastructure. Little wonder, many students are
complaining about the state of facilities in the 45-year-old
institution situated in the Sango area of the sprawling city.
Indeed, from the unoccupied lands, hostels to the
laboratories, it is a litany of fear and anguish for the
For instance, our correspondent, who visited the school on
Monday, observed that there was a large expanse of unused
land occupied by tall grasses and trees. According to the
students, the unused parcel of land is capable of being a
home to reptiles and a den to cultists.
Some of them told our correspondent that they disliked
moving around the campus at night for fear of being
attacked by reptiles.
“As you can see, the bush is directly behind the classrooms
and offices. We receive lectures late into the evening at
times and, as a woman, the fear of being attacked while
going home at night is always there,” said a female student
of the Faculty of Engineering.
Another female student said she skipped any class
scheduled to hold late in the evening in order to leave the
area early. She noted that because of the irregular supply of
electricity in the school, it was better not to take a risk of
being in the area at night.
“I do not have to be told not to stay there when it is dark. We
see people coming out of the place in the evening but,
personally, I do not know who they are. Some of our
colleagues say they are farmers but anybody can dress like a
farmer to actualise an evil intention. That place needs to be
cleared,” she said.
For another student, who gave his name as Segun, it is
normal to find undeveloped land in big institutions. He
believes it is pleasant to live close to nature.
“I have heard people complaining about the place but I see
nothing wrong in it. I visit the University of Ibadan regularly.
There are more bushes there than here and it is always
lovely to walk under those trees.”
Apart from the bushy environment, the students also
claimed that they were having challenges in their hostels.
The school provides accommodation for the majority of the
learners in four large hostels. These are the Ramat, Unity,
Orisun and Olori halls. Apart from the electricity supplied by
the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company to the school,
the institution compliments it with five hours of electricity
supply through its main generator. Water is also pumped to
the hostels during this
However, the students are demanding more. Some of them
residing on campus want the authorities to extend the time
that electricity is supplied to their hostels, especially during
examination periods. They also want more cleaners in the
hostels in order to address sewage disposal challenges.
At the Unity Hall, which accommodates male students, some
of the students also complained about the poor condition of
their rooms.
“We drop our mattresses on the floor because there are no
beds. Mosquitoes invade our hostel because water from the
bathrooms and toilets form pools in the open space within
the hostel. The water channel is not closed and the water
does not flow freely. We have enough water and the
electricity situation is not too bad but six hours a day is not
enough because we have to read at night after classes,
especially during examination periods,” said one of the
residents, Asaolu Adeola.
Our correspondent, however, observed that the school is
upgrading the laboratories and studios in the faculties to aid
learning and research. For example, at the Department of
Chemistry, the obsolete equipment at its laboratories have
been replaced with infrared, colorimeter, conductivity
meter, vacuum pump, and gas chromatograph, among
others. But the students complained that the laboratories
were too small for effective learning.
“The development we have seen so far came from the
Tertiary Education Trust Fund and some old students of the
school. It seems the Oyo State Government that owns the
school has abandoned it,” said Oladele, an HND11 student
of the department.
The school Public Relations Officer, Soladoye Adewole,
however, said maintaining such a big school required huge
funding and time to occupy all the virgin lands that the
students said were threats to nightlife on campus.
He explained that some of the bushy portions belonged to
the school’s closest neighbour, the University of Ibadan,
while some employees of the polytechnic used other
unoccupied lands belonging to the polytechnic as farms.
He said, “This is a big place but well maintained. Part of the
virgin land belongs to the UI while some of our workers use
the land that the polytechnic has yet to occupy as farms. In
essence, they cannot refer to them as bushes or forest. It is,
however, important to say that the school is introducing new
programmes and more of the lands are being put to use.”
On the lack of space at the science laboratories, Adewole
said the authorities had met the requirement set by the
National Board of Technical Education and that a new multi-
purpose laboratory had just been built and completed for
students’ use.
“The polytechnic education system is practical. The NBTE is
always here to assess the quality of our laboratory
equipment. We cannot go lower than the standard set by the
board,” he said.
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