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Nigerian university, OAU, shuts down after indigenes invaded campus with charms

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Students of foremost Nigerian institution, the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Osun State, have been told to proceed on a forced two-weeks break by the management, beginning from Monday, March 28.

The action by the school’s management was necessitated by the invasion of the institution on March 17 by angry indigenes of the University host community with assorted charms, amulets and other fetish objects, to protest the announcement of a new Vice Chancellor who is not a native of the town.

The indigenes of the town were angry that one of their own was overlooked for the post in preference for someone who is an “outsider,” citing favoritism and nepotism by the management.

The protest was sparked after the school’s Senate announced Prof. Adeboye Bamire, as the 12th VC of the institution, with the natives insisting that an indigene should have been made the VC instead.

The indigenes took exception to the appointment of a non-native as the VC of “their” and decided to register their anger by the fetish protest.

In a statement signed by the University’s Registrar, Mrs. M. I. Omosule, announcing the temporary closure of the institution, the management said it was to prevent any breakdown of law and order and to stop the students from carrying out reprisal attacks on the indigenes of the town.

The statement also noted that the protesters had assaulted some workers and students of OAU during the invasion and the measure was taken to prevent the students taking the laws into their hands as a result of the attacks.

Metro

M23 rebels take control of Kitshanga in eastern DR Congo

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The M23 rebels have announced that its fighters have seized control of the strategic town of Kitshanga, in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), after days of intense fighting.

The DRC military authorities also confirmed in a statement late on Friday that its forces have withdrawn from the town in a tactical move to protect civilians in the face of a renewed offensive by the rebel militia.

“We have tactically withdrawn from the city in order to attract these genocidal forces deep into the city and avoid the worst for our people in Kitshanga,” spokesman for the military governor of North Kivu, Lieutenant-Colonel Guillaume Ndjike, said in the statement.

“We are making every effort to dislodge this enemy,” he added.

Videos then emerged on social media showing the M23 fighters celebrating and claiming they had captured the town.

The M23 rebels said it took control of Kitshanga town on Thursday night after capturing several villages on the road linking the town of about 60,000 people to the provincial capital, Goma.

In an earlier statement, M23′s spokesman, Lawrence Kanyuka, has accused government troops of attacking civilians in Kitchanga and elsewhere, and said the rebel group was “obliged to intervene and stop another genocide”.

While condemning the recent development, the UN peacekeeping mission (MONUSCO), said more than 500 people, including women and children, are seeking refuge at its base in the town of Kitshanga.

MONUSCO spokesperson, Ndeye Khady Lo, said civilians fleeing from Kitchanga have been given tents, food, water and first aid.

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237 African migrants rescued off Libyan coast

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Not less than 237 African migrants were on Friday, rescued after their makeshift boat capsized off the Libyan coast while navigating the dangerous Mediterranean Sea, on their way to Europe.

French medical charity, Doctors Without Borders (MSF), which carried out the rescue mission, said the migrants were rescued by its chartered rescue vessel, Geo Barents, which was sailing in the Mediterranean Sea, north of the country’s capital Tripoli, when it received a distress call.

“The Geo Barents ship encountered other overcrowded rubber dinghies with migrants attempting to reach Europe and took them on board,” the NGO said.

“Following instructions by the maritime rescue coordination centre, the ship then sailed towards the northern Italian port of La Spezia.l,” it added.

The MSF and other NGOs operating rescue vessels off Africa’s northern coast have accused the Italian government of deliberately assigning far away ports to discourage their operations, an accusation the Italian Interior Ministry had denied.

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