Gyang Bere, Jos
President Muhammadu Buhari has charged students in tertiary institutions to shun cultism and social vices and channel their energy and knowledge towards nation building.
The president gave the charge at the 31st and 32nd combined convocation ceremonies of the University of Jos held at the Gen. Jeremiah Useni (Rtd) Stadium Naraguta campus, Jos, Plateau State, yesterday.
President Buhari, who was represented by the Executive Secretary of Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND), Prof. Suleiman Elias Bogoro, said: “We should take the advantage of the opportunity within the context of a complex society such as ours, to help our society to create better life for our citizens in the midst of these challenges.
“The nation is grappling with developmental challenges of providing essential needs such as schools, clothing, shelter and basic utilities to the majority of our citizens.”
He said that Nigerian universities provide the best pathway towards breaking away from the shackles of ignorance, poverty, deprivation and despair by engaging into research to solve daily challenges.
Also speaking at the event, Plateau State governor, Simon Lalong, vowed to recover land belonging to the university.
“I have received the report of the committee we set up to investigate the alleged encroachment into the land belonging to the University of Jos. Let me assure the university that we shall secure every inch of land belonging to it that has been encroached upon and those found culpable will be made to account for their actions.
“We are working with the university and security agencies to ensure that cultism and other criminal activities within and around the campus areas are tackled to provide a safe learning environment,” Lalong said.
The Vice Chancellor of the University of Jos, Prof Sedi Sabastian Maimako said the institution could not access land donated to it by the state government due to encroachment by surrounding communities.
“It would be a real pity if the land which has been given to us by the government to form part of our masterplan cannot be fully accessed and developed due to hostility and non-cooperation from the surrounding communities.”
He called on the Federal Government to provide a security outpost close to the university and construct perimeter fence of the institution to enhance the security of staff and students.