By Kareem Shamusudeen
In the wake of the recent theft case at Lord Tedder Hall, the Chief Security Officer (CSO) of the university, Mr. Victor Fadeyibi, has said the security men on campus do not usually patrol the male hostel because the male students are security conscious and can counter cases of theft. In every case however, he said “vigilance is important.”
He made this declaration in an interview with the Union of Campus Journalists (UCJ) today. He further added that much security vigilance are placed on the female hostels because the female students are mostly vulnerable to theft even as he said the security personnel are still not enough to guarantee adequate security of the female hostels.
He added: Even the women (female) hostel that we cover, we are still complaining of man power problem.”
Mr. Victor admitted that there is shortage of security personnel on campus, but he said efforts are going on in recruiting more personnel to the security unit—though the process had been halted due to the on-going NASU/SSANU strike.
When brought to his notice the fact that thieves caught in the past are the ones who still perpetuate criminal activities on campus, Mr. Fadeyibi stressed that the university’s security unit cannot prosecute cases, they can only investigate cases and hand them over suspects to the Nigeria Police Force.
“The security unit cannot prosecute. We can only transfer cases to the Police. It is the Police that would do the prosecution in court not the University of Ibadan security,” he said.
Speaking on the development of the suspects nabbed at Tedder Hall, the CSO made it known that investigation is on-going, that the suspects are in their custody currently being interrogated and efforts are made to arrest the third accomplice who is on the run.
He stated: “Two of them (suspects) are with us, but we understand that there are three and that the third one escaped. We are going after him.”
He, however, said theft cases on campus had not been won in court because the students tend to lose interest when the cases get to the Police Force. He mentioned that the students whose items were stolen are only interested in recovering their items and nothing more.
“Most of the cases we charge to court are not won because of the attitude of the students who are the victims.
“The moment we say we are going to the police now, the owners of the stolen items will begin to complain. They are not willing to go.
“All they are interested in is getting their items back. Whereas without those items to tender in court, you cannot establish a prima facie case,” he explained.
While expatiating on the reason the security men on campus are not armed with ammunitions, Mr. Victor emphasized that it is illegal for any non-governmental security agencies to wield ammunitions since insecurity has become the order of the day in the country.
“The power to carry arms is derived from the Government and it is only the Inspector General of Police that can issue license for arms,” he said.
The CSO then advised the students to be vigilant since “security is everybody’s business.” He charged the defense ministers to brace up security in their various halls, while asserting that “University of Ibadan Security cannot cover every room.”
He added that the students should also report any strange movements in their halls since they can best identify those who are their hall residents or not.
Much as he advised the students to be security conscious, he refrained them from taking laws into their hands, harping that they should turn in apprehended thieves. “As undergraduates, you are not supposed to engage in jungle justice because history and experience have taught us that many innocent people suffer through jungle justice,” he advised.
Mr. Fadeyibi, therefore, called on the students to have confidence in the security unit on campus because they are available to ensure the protection of lives and properties (of the students). He also added that “partnership in the area of information gathering, information supply,” is of paramount importance between the students and the security unit.