In reaction to the recent protest by some indigenes of Ile Ife, against the announcement of a non-native as the Vice Chancellor of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka has condemned the protest describing it as “crazy”.
The University campus was shut down earlier this week following the announcement of Prof Adebayo Bamire as the 12th substantive VC of OAU.
In videos and pictures seen by Ripples Nigeria, the protesters invaded the campus with fetish objects and masquerades, preventing students and staff from gaining entry into the University.
Prof. Soyinka, who was once a lecturer at the University expressed disgust over the act, and wondered why intelligent indigenes of Ile Ife had not come out to disown the protesters.
Prof. Soyinka spoke at a lecture titled, ‘The Politics of Black Intellection and Creativity, at the University of Pennsylvania, the United States’, which was the first of the newly-inaugurated Distinguished Lecture series in African Studies.
The Nobel Laureate had earlier expressed shock over the incessant kidnappings, ritual killings and violence that have become the order of the day in Nigeria.
Asked to express his view on the agitations that the next Vice-Chancellor of the Obafemi Awolowo University must be an indigene of its host city, Soyinka said “it is crazy”.
“An Ife person wrote me and say, look at these people disgracing us. I told him to go there and disgrace them. You are an Ife person. You should be in the front line.
“The Ife people should say those people don’t belong to us, we don’t know where they came from. And they should be dealt with ruthlessly. Why should there be an Ife VC anywhere? I just don’t understand what they put in the water these days. It is crazy.”
The Ile Ife indigene in the VCship contest, Prof Rufus Adedoyin, reportedly came ninth in the screening, out of 16 candidates shortlisted for interaction for the post of VC by the Joint Council and Senate Selection Board.
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