The new on-campus accommodation policy implemented by the management of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, has forced many students to live off-campus, thereby increasing the pressure on the public transport system available town-campus shuttle.
The policy, in effect, bans unauthorised student residents at the school’s hostels, marking a departure from what was obtainable up to the last session.
Students interviewed by our correspondent lamented the new policy had brought mobility woes to them and made them miss their lectures. According to them, this is because the number of students off-campus, since the implementation of the policy in the newly commenced semester, has outweighed the carrying capacity of the existing buses servicing the campus from different locations in the town of Ile-Ife.
While narrating her experience, Ayomide Fashanu, a fresh student who could not secure accommodation on campus told our correspondent that she had missed two classes this week having trekked from the university entrance to her department due to the scarcity of busses.
“It was so painful that twice this week I have missed my classes,” she said. “Getting to campus gate and having to wait for more than an hour, I resolved to trek from campus gate to my department in White House. The bus stop was crowded but no buses to convey the students. I hope this is resolved as soon as possible. It is killing.”
Another student, Abiola Akinyemi, accused the management of admitting students off the limit of its carrying capacity.
He said: “OAU management is greedy. Go to schools like UI, they don’t admit up to 4000 students for a session but in OAU, the management eats more than what they can chew. They decongested the hostels which is a brilliant one but refuse to regulate the number of students admitted.
It is simple mathematics. They should know that students made to live off campus will be at the receiving end. “It will be more difficult by the time all returning students resume fully.”
Muyiwa Afolabi, a third-year student of the department of English language said: “this transportation thing is affecting our academics. It has now become a daily routine to for most of us to miss our first lectures.”
“If the union is available, we can’t suffer this hard. At least the transportation committee would have attended to the menace.”.
A campus shuttle driver, who identified himself as Opeyemi said: “We, transporters, also feel for students as the rate of students living in town has now increased and has also raised the numbers of daily bus users. And there is a law that stipulates a regulated number of buses that operate on campus per day.”
However, while speaking with journalists during the week, the university’s spokesperson Abiodun Olanrewaju, said that crisis has nothing to do with the university and it is not the duty of the school to provide transportation for students as management has no affair with the movement of students.
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