It was my extra year at the University of Uyo then. I had lost interest in school by that time.
That fateful day, I was at CBN Hall while students were on a peaceful protest against the hike in transportation fares for carriage to the Permanent Site at Nwaniba Road
Everything was going according to plan until the protest went south and the police did their thing.
My junior at HOFACO, Kingsley Johnson Udoette was the lone casualty.
He was shot below the stomach on the abdomen and could’ve survived if he was attended to fast enough.
He laid there in a pool of his own blood while students were running helter-skelter in different directions.
I still maintain the rapid loss of blood killed Kingsley but that doesn’t matter now. May his soul rest in peace.
News of the uprising soon spread to other parts of the school and in no time, it soon turned into a full-scale riot where properties were destroyed while some were looted and stolen.
I joined the fray and took to my heels heading towards the first gate which was the most logical exit because the gate at Akpan Ekpo market was crowded with over 500 people trying to fit through at once.
I got to First Gate and before I knew wassup, the blind man who stood to beg for alms ran past me and even faster than I did.
He carefully maneuvered his way, crossed the road amidst the pandemonium, and made his way safely across en route Ikot Ekpene Road.
I was confused. What just happened? Abi my eye dey pain me?
I realized that day that not everybody begging for alms are sincere about their condition
I was at Epic Plaza when I remembered Mfoniso Edinyang (May her soul RIP) was still at Prefab 2B.
I started another rat race towards the female hostel area and by that time, the building housing the Vice Chancellor’s office was razed down by angry students who felt the VC’s poor decision to increase the fare was to blame for what happened.
I got to the hostel area and met other guys trying to get their GFs or sisters or friends out.
I dashed inside the hostel and managed to find Fonny hiding inside her room with her friends.
We grabbed whatever we could and made our way out through the small gate beside hall 6 and escaped into Itu Road through Ikpa Road.
Tear gas had rented the air all around Ikpa Road and the school environs and even commuters who had no business with the school were affected.
The gory sight of Kingsley’s body lying dead at the main gate entrance stayed with me for years until I was able to get over it.
My family and his family were friends for years and his Mum has not been able to get over the loss of Kingsley.
The school was shut down and we proceeded on a strike that lasted six months when we resumed, students were made to pay 7500 for non-engineering students and 10000 for engineering students because the school authority believed they instigated the riot.
I don’t know about others o, but Akpan Mma Aggy refused to pay a dime despite getting the money from Mma Aggy🚶🏿🚶🏿🚶🏿
June 12, 2013.
A day written firmly in the annals of history in the University of Uyo
By Kufre Carter