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…UI LOSES N10BN PROPERTY, FARMS; SOLICITS FG'S INTERVENTION

By NBF News

The University of Ibadan lost property worth about N10 billion to last weekend's devastating flood, making the premier tertiary institution one of the biggest casualties of the tragedy.

The flood destroyed on the campus books valued at N2 billion, washed away the Fish Farm with different species of fish valued at about N300 million, while the popular and age long Zoological Garden was flooded, leading to the death of many of the stock of animals.

Also affected were students residing at the Obafemi Awolowo Hall as those occupying the ground floor had their rooms flooded while those on the topmost floor were literally overwhelmed with the deluge, which took over their rooms.

There was also extensive damage of teaching and research farm, which, Daily Sun learnt, was very dear to the heart of the university's Vice Chancellor, Prof. Isaac Folorunso Adewole.

The monumental loss prompted the vice chancellor, who went on an assessment tour of the damage with a team of senior university officials, to immediately ask the federal and state governments, well endowed Nigerians and corporate bodies to come to the 61-year-old institution's aid.

'There is no way we can handle this alone. For us to return to our form, we certainly need government's assistance because this devastation is quite massive,' Adewole said after leading the management team to assess the damage.

Recounting the losses incurred as a result of the over seven-hour downpour, the VC said: ' The major calamity suffered by the university include the washing away of the Fish Farm with different species of fish valued at about N300 million, over flooding of the Zoological Garden, leading to the death of animals, extensive damage of the Teaching and Research Farm and the destruction of books estimated to the tune of N2 billion.

'Besides, many gigantic buildings, laboratories and expensive equipment were destroyed by the flood, which equally pulled down the university's fence and 13 electricity poles, thereby compounding the hitherto poor electricity supply to the institution.'

Reports said many students turned 'fishermen' as they caught fish that were swept off the institution's Fish Farm into their hostels.

Relating the experience of the flood and extent of its damage to the VC, Head of Department of Fishery, Dr. Bamidele Omitoye said some special species of fish including Claias gariepinus, Heterobranchus bidorsalis, Oreochromis niloticus and Parachana obscura sourced from different places, had all been swept away by the flood.

While appreciating God that no student was killed in the flood, Prof. Adewole promised that the university would urgently commence repair work with its internally- generated revenue.

He, however, expressed concern that the major task at hand required the urgent intervention of the government, saying, 'from the magnitude of destruction that I have seen on this campus, it is so obvious that UI needs Federal Government's urgent assistance because this is beyond us. We shall appreciate individual and collective assistance too as we have been extensively affected by the flood.'


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By: FRANCIS TAWIAH ,