Should FG shut universities over elections?

 Should FG shut universities over elections?

By Quadri Yahya

Wale Adekola, a student of the University of Ibadan couldn’t resist exercising his franchise so he started to process the registration for his Permanent Voter Card in 2021 ahead of the 2023 elections.

In mid-2022, Adekola finalised his registration with the Independent National Electoral Commission office in the Gate area, Ibadan, and secured his PVC which will enable him to vote for the candidate of his choice.

“What nonsense!”. Adekola added, “The federal government should find a better way to ensure accurate security. Schools shouldn’t be shut down.”

In a country where election violence poses a threat to elections, Adekola’s concern about his security is understandable.

Delayed FG response

If universities refuse to shut down schools, 40 per cent of voters who are students may be disenfranchised.

The Academic Staff Union of Universities had said it was not in the purview of the National Universities Commission and other tertiary institutions regulatory agencies to shut schools to allow students in universities, polytechnics and colleges of education to vote during the forthcoming elections.

A member of the National Executive Council of ASUU, Prof Gbolahan Bolari, made this known while reacting to calls from individuals and groups, including the House of Representatives, that the nation’s higher institutions should be shut during elections so that students who registered near their homes could return home to vote.


Like Adekola, many students raised concerns over the issue.

Mubarakah Moses, although not vote-ready, expressed there is no use disturbing the students’ education for the sake of an election.

But another student, Sorunke Kehinde Husseinah begged to differ.

“It’s best that’s done to ensure the safety of the students”, the student at Obafemi Awolowo University, Osun State, said.

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