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Police Allegedly Open Fire, As Delta Poly Students Protest Hike in Fees

 Police in Ozoro, headquarters of Isoko North Local Government Area on Wednesday allegedly open fire on hundreds of students of Delta state Polytechnic, Ozoro, Isoko North Local Government Area after a peaceful protest by the students turned violence.
The students who were protesting hike in school fees as well as ultimatum to pay up their school fees by Monday, next week or be sent home from writing the first semester exams were said to have burnt some cars in the institution after the protest turned violence.
Some of the rioting students however marched through the streets of Ozoro and to the palace of the traditional ruler of Ozoro, HRM Anthony Ogbogbo Ibuka I where they also registered their protest.
The protesting students who barricaded the ever-busy Ozoro-Kwala-Asaba expressway had force vehicle to detour as some of the rampaging students who have been grudging the hike were said to have smashed private vehicles along the expressway.
Daily Times was told policemen deployed to the scene by the institution management opened fire on the protesters and arrested some of them.
Three of the students were injured in the process and rushed to nearby hospital, the source said.
Some of the placards bore by the protesters read; “Reduce our school fees now” and “Return to the old school fees”.
One of the protesting students told Daily Times that the protest was primarily because of sudden increase in their school fees from N32, 000 to N54,850 which is a flat rate for both old and new students.
She said that the development culminated with the ultimatum which the institution recently announced.
She however confirmed that three students of the institution were injured by stray bullet fired by police and were rushed for medical care.
The development which had crippled academy activities at the institution for hours however forced the institution management to shut the institution for one week.
The institution’s Public Relations Officer, Mr. B.A Ekanem declined to comment on the incident saying he was not in the mood to speak but the state Police Public Relation Officer, Celestine Kalu said it was not true that students were shot at or hospitalize during the protest saying that the police were only deployed to maintain law and order.
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