In a tragic and alarming incident, unidentified assailants suspected to be phone snatchers have claimed the life of a final year student at Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi (ATBU).
Joseph Obiaje Agabaidu, a 500-level Geology student and the eldest among four siblings, was fatally stabbed in an attempted phone robbery.
According to a source within the university, the incident occurred as Agabaidu was returning to his lodge near Yelwan Tudu Market in the Yelwa area, a suburb of Bauchi metropolis, around 7 pm on Saturday, December 2, 2023. The attackers, driven by the intent to forcefully snatch his phone, inflicted fatal wounds on the student during the confrontation.
Despite immediate efforts to provide medical assistance, Agabaidu succumbed to his injuries and tragically passed away the following morning.
This unfortunate event serves as a chilling reminder of a similar incident that transpired last December, where another Benue student lost their life in a phone-related struggle. In the face of such heartbreaking losses, we earnestly appeal to the school management, the police, and the Bauchi State government to prioritize and bolster the security of students within the state.
The plea extends to the wider community, as we collectively strive to prevent further tragedies like this. Joseph Agabaidu leaves behind three younger siblings, all pursuing their education at ATBU. Plans are underway to transport his remains back to his family, with the Vice President of the Student Union Government, two university staff members, and his siblings taking on this solemn responsibility.
In response to this devastating incident, students are gearing up for a peaceful protest on Monday morning to express their grievances. The purpose of the protest is not only to mourn the loss of a fellow student but also to draw attention to the precarious security situation faced by students in the region.
A student involved in the planning of the protest emphasizes the urgency of addressing the security concerns: “This is not the first nor second time this would be happening. I feel very pained about this incident. I also have three younger siblings here in the school. Imagine how I’ll feel if such should happen to any of them. It’s just that with the organization I am a member of in the school, I just have to maintain a neutral stand on this. I shouldn’t be seen in the forefront of the entire protest, but honestly, it’s very painful.”
As the students unite in their peaceful demonstration, their collective voice calls on the university management, state government, and security agencies to rise to the occasion and provide more robust security measures for all students who have left their parents' homes to pursue education. The tragic loss of Joseph Agabaidu underscores the urgent need for proactive measures to ensure the safety and well-being of students within the community.