Forlorn report reaching news desk has it that, a lecturer in the Department of Microbiology, University of Calabar, Dr. Godwin Iwatt, has died nine days after he was shot by an unidentified gunman.

Dr Godwin Iwatt 360x246
Dr. Godwin Iwatt

It would be recalled that on Tuesday, 6th May, 2014 report that the lecturer was in his office at the Department of Microbiology at about 3 pm when two persons suspected to be students went into his office and opened fire on him. Read Here

It was learnt that Iwatt was rushed to the medical centre of the institution, but later referred to the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, where he was said to be responding to medical treatment after the bullets were removed.

The source who preferred anonymity disclosed to grapevine that he had under gone a surgery and a thoracotomy chest tube was inserted revealing that he was shot once at the left thoracic cavity.

The source said “When he was rushed in, he was in pains the doctor on call was Prof. Etiuma Aniekan who is a specialist and senior doctor at the cardiothoracic unit”.

As at 8pm on Thursday, May 8, 2014, Dr. Iwatt Godwin was said to be responding to treatment but the intensive care unit was still under heavy police presence.

He was said to have given up life about one hour after frantic efforts to save his life to no avail.

Efforts to confirm from the police whether anyone has been arrested in connection with his shooting were not successful as calls to the telephone number of the state police spokesman did not connect.

He, however, died on May 15 from what was said to be complications from the bullet wound he sustained.

Public Relations Officer of UNICAL, Mr. Eyo Effiong, said, “The lecturer died last week; May 15.”

Though the perpetrator of the crime had yet to be apprehended, speculations were rife on Wednesday in the school that the incident was cult related.

When our grapevine visited the department, findings revealed that the lecturer had received written death threats in the past and got another a few days before he was shot.

A female student in the department, who craved anonymity said, “He (Iwatt) received a note from some people suspected to be students who he had problems with. He even came to the lecture hall Friday before the incident, and he challenged those who were threatening him to show their faces.

“He was shouting that nobody can do anything to him. In fact, he dared the person to wait for him at the gate that he was not afraid. Two days later I heard he had been shot.”

The lecturer’s death threw the university community, especially members of the academic staff into confusion. grapevine observed that most of the lecturers seemed jittery of strange faces or movements. It was learnt that the day after the shooting, lecturers, especially those in the microbiology department, did not turn up for duty.

A lecturer, who also spoke under the condition of anonymity, said the incident was unfortunate.

He said, “Our morale is really low. I don’t remember the last time a teacher was killed in this school.
“Something must be done about security in the institution. It does not sound well that someone just walked into the office of a lecturer, shoots him dead and just walks away. It means that could happen again to any one of us. That is not a comfortable thought,” he said.

A student from the department, who identified herself simply as Deborah, also said, “It came as a shock to us when we heard a lecturer was killed in his office. Although the way most of the lecturers treat students here could tempt one into doing anything, going to the extent of taking a life is too far.”

An official in the office of the vice-chancellor said, “As you can see, the mood of everyone is dampened. Nobody is in the mood to talk right now. Everybody is still in shock.”

Meanwhile, the university authorities say investigations are still on going to unravel who the shooter was.

The institution’s PRO told our correspondent that UNICAL had been silent because everybody was awaiting the outcome of the investigation that was meant to unravel the killer’s identity.

Effiong said, “The assailant is still on the run. The police have been using vital test messages on his phone to trace the killer and they are progressing.”

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