Prof. Lilian Salami, vice chancellor of the University of Benin, has urged students to always embrace dialogue as a means of resolving conflicts rather than resorting to protests at the slightest provocation.
After an altercation on Thursday between some students from the institution and soldiers, Prof. Salami made that call in a statement she released on Friday in Benin.
She pointed out that clashes and demonstrations typically result in more harm and destruction to both students and other citizens.
On Thursday, when some soldiers went to the university’s campus to use the ATM, chaos broke out.
However, different eyewitness accounts of what happened between the students and the soldiers were given.
According to one account, the students resisted the soldiers’ attempts to cut in front of them in line to use the ATM, which resulted in fights between them.
Another account said a large group of students descended on the soldiers when the military men upbraided some students for wearing camouflage.
Prof. Salami described the incident as unfortunate.
“The unfortunate incident of the clash between some students and soldiers on Thursday, Feb. 2, resulting from alleged resistance of students to the soldiers’ attempt to jump ATM queues on campus has been brought under control.
“Management of the university is in discussions with the hierarchy of the army in Benin (the Supply and Transport) for amicable resolution.
“Management acknowledges that these are challenging times for everyone and enjoins all to remain calm while efforts are being made to avert a recurrence.
“Management also calls on the students to constantly embrace dialogue in resolving issues that concern them rather than taking to protests, at any provocation.
“Such protests cause more injury and damage for the students and for other citizens,’’ Prof. Salami stated. (NAN)