UNIJOS’ host community wants development for peace

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Sebastian Maimako, University of Jos Vice-Chancellor
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Narkuta-Babale Bayan Doka Development Association (NABBDA), the host community of the University of Jos (UNIJOS) has challenged the institution on the alleged exclusion of its inhabitants from the school.

It called on the institution to include its members in considerations for admission and employment to foster peace and progress in the area.

This is as it alleged that developments in the school over the years had led to hardship on the community in terms of poor road access and lack of water supply.

The association, in a statement signed on Thursday by its President, Ibrahim Shehu-Muhammad, lamented that the university has abandoned its social responsibility role to the community.

It also called on the university to also reconsider its decision to demarcate its land, until it addressed the grey areas with the host community.

The statement recalled that on Saturday, 22nd February, 2020, “The family of Wakili Jatau of Anaguta,” have allegedly led hoodlums into the Narkuta community, in the guise of protesting the land demarcation by the authority of the University of Jos, which resulted to the loss of lives and burning of a house and worship centre.

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The Association said the Narkuta community, being the immediate host community to the university, was fully aware that the institution had acquired the said land from the Bureau for Public Enterprise (BPE).

“We, therefore, call on Government and the authority of the University of Jos to as a matter of urgency address the issue of gray areas on the land before going on with the demarcation exercise in order to stop any unfortunate incidents that would lead to possible break down of law and order, and to an extent tempering with our hard earned peace,” the statement read in part.

According to NABBDA, government should also look into the bad condition of their roads which are in dilapidated conditions and the issue of water supply in the community.

“As law-abiding community with high respect to constituted authority, we call on the State Government to consider the plight of the community in the areas of road rehabilitation, as the major road leading to Narkuta Community was blocked by the University of Jos since 2001, hence denying us easy access into our community.”

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“It is also worthy of mention that the same University of Jos has blocked us from accessing portable water, of which is a great cause of concern.

“We, therefore, urge the Government to also consider exploring possible ways of supplying water into the community, amongst other pressing needs of livelihood.”

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