By Francis Okoye, Maiduguri
The director of Radio and Public Relations of the University of Maiduguri, Prof Danjuma Gambo, has revealed why the citadel of learning is persistently being attacked by the Boko Haram terrorists group than other unversity in the Northeast.
He said the main target of the attackers of the institution is to embarrass the federal government.
According to Gambo, this is so because the university is about the only conventional university in the Northeast, which represents the largest investment by federal government in terms of Infrastructure, human resources and technical capacity for the past 42 years in the zone.
He added that while UniMaid, with a landmass of 45 hectres of land and 27 perimeter fencing, has an enrollment of 45,000 students and combined staff of 4000, the insurgents feel that bringing the school down would amount to crushing western education.
He said, “University of Maiduguri is a major symbol of the federal government and that explains why several measures have been taken to keep the University open despite Boko Haram’s frantic efforts to pull it down.
“The terroriststs, knowing fully well that the institution is the pinnacle of western education thought that anybody who brings it down has eliminated Western Education. Somebody somewhere wants to shut down the university, not understanding that the university is greatly contributing to Borno economy.
“The University Administration has made it clear that it will not shut down the University because the vice chancellor, Prof Ibrahim Abubakar Njodi felt that shutting the university is like shutting down the future of young generation of Nigerians”.
Gambo noted that it is not surprising that the attacks are happening, but that what is supprising is th fact that it started since January this year, even as he observed that the institution had not been attacked since 2009 when Boko Haram ignited insurgency in the Northeast.
He continued: “Every other attack since then has been averted through the vigilance and alertness of security forces, even though none of the attacks has been direct as the present ones. So, the reason for these attacks are not far from being that University of Maiduguri is the symbol of the federal government, with the largest investment in the Northeast.
“It is the pinnacle of western education. Somebody somewhere wants to shut it down thinking that when that is done, the fountain of western education is crushed. So, Keeping the university open is our contribution to the fight against insurgency. We are ready to keep the university open, even if it means to pay the supreme price”.
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By Francis Okoye, Maiduguri