The Vice – Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, Prof. Idowu Olayinka, on behalf of the senate members some months back announced the increment of the accommodation fees from 14,000 to 30,000 in order to ensure that quality services are rendered for students who reside in the Halls of Residence. Also, the increment by the institution was due to decrease in funding by the Federal Government. This decision however, led to an uproar and it seems strike action by the students was inevitable then, but, after a critical look at the rationale behind the decision, we all agreed that it was a decision that should and must be upheld by everyone in order to see our good and desired dreams for our halls of Residence come to actualization.
It is a normal phenomenon that this type of historic decision come with changes but how fast it will be and when they will start manifesting is question to be determined based on the conditions and state of things before the change and the situations after it that is, are the surrounding circumstances encouraging or otherwise.
In view of the above stated increment in the accommodation allowance, here is an assessment of Kuti Hall, University of Ibadan to check for changes that have occurred so far, ongoing works and what the hall management should also help consider.
BRIEF INFORMATION ABOUT KUTI HALL
The hall was formally opened in 1954, and it is named after the late Rev. Israel Oladotun Ransome Kuti (1891-1955), an educationist and clergyman. He was the pioneering president of the Nigerian Union of Teachers until 1954, and member of historical Elliot Commission on higher Education in West Africa (1943-1945). The majority report of the commission to which he subscribed led to the institutions of higher education in West Africa. The hall is the third male hall opened after the Mellanby and Tedder Halls and it has capacity to accommodate 554. The hall is believed to be an abode of great men and it is shown in their lives and motto. They are popularly referred to as “hall of fine boys” by University of Ibadan students especially ladies. The hall has A to E blocks i.e. 5 blocks and the D and E is for the finalists, the elders in the hall.
STATE OF THE FACILITIES
The toilets in block A, C, D and E are in a very bad state currently and the comfortable toilets facilities are only available in the block B. However, there is good news; there is a renovation of the toilet facilities on going in the blocks D and E and water has started running in those toilets. It was also gathered that this renovation will be extended to the blocks A and C. This is a commendable move on the part of the management and the good work should continue. The bathrooms have curtains at their entrances and this indeed to some extent is a sign of comfort ability as it will be a reasonable man’s believe that behind the curtain is a palatable aura. The washing hand basins which are in the same environment of the toilets and bathroom are still looking wonderful. So, in this aspect of the hall, I will credit them for the good job that is presently under execution and encourage that “Kutites”, should use these facilities responsibly when they have been fixed. It is certain that, having to fetch whenever the need to use the rest rooms and bathrooms arises will be reduced by the ongoing renovation.
LIGHT IS THE BEGINNING OF LIFE
As we know that activities in the school rest solely on the availability of electricity, how and what been the condition of electricity in the hall? Before this session, it has not really been in an awesome state as it is now, which was caused by the fixing of security light on every corridors and the entrance of the hall. This will indeed make the atmosphere more comfortable for its residents and also curb issues of theft from increasing to the climax. Almost all the rooms have proper light connections except from some rooms in the block A and some other few rooms. This I believe will be attended to soonest even though some of the occupants claimed they were asked to pay for it before the work can be done. However, the state of things in the hall is currently undergoing some drastic changes of which the electrification of the hall is part.
WATER BRINGS LIFE
The water tank at the back of block A has been faulty for a little while and there are some tanks without taps and bad pipes at the back of block D but almost all of it has been repaired and as such members of block A are relieved from the stress of having to travel miles before getting water. It must be noted that there has never been a time when there is no water supply in the hall except it is a situation that affects the whole school community. So, currently, there is an overflowing supply of water in the tanks in each blocks and this is encouraging.
NEW DOOR LOCKS
The issues of theft, a common occurrence in the University has been given a kind of solution by the provision of new locks for each door in the hall. Although some few people said they had paid or have to pay for new locks during their clearance for room. Well, this maybe due to a lot of reasons such as failure of such person to submit his former key while clearing out of his former room or willful destruction of the school property (lock). This new locks have created a hurdle which must be crossed by all these unwelcome visitors before they can carry out their ignoble act.
The back entrance for each room will now have net and this has started in D block of the hall. The rationale behind this is to prevent issues of theft through a means they call “spider”. Indeed the safe of the residents and properties is now being guaranteed.
Aside from the works stated above, I will also want to bring to your notice that there were some blocks that had leaking roofs and it has been so for quite a time and as such, it exposed a lot of “Kutites” especially those at the top most floor to rat menace. However, the hall management in their assiduousness has helped put an end to it by repairing the roof.
A “Kutite” in describing the pace of the changes occurring in the hall as slow and steady and that there are large changes that will take place soonest. I concur indeed with the stand of this “Kutite”, because the hall is gradually being put in a new light different from what it used to be.