UNICAL Mourn The Death Of Final Year Students

Death of three final year students has hit the University of Calabar (UNICAL) with a devastating shock. Described as a serial tragedy.

Accounting and Linguistic Department lost three students and a lecturer in quick succession during the five months strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

Last week, silence gripped the Faculty of Management in University of Calabar (UNICAL), as staff and students suspended academic activities to mourn the dead.

It was learnt that the victims, Francisca Abakum, Samuel Larry, Mabel Udo were all final year students in Accounting, while Agba Daniel Otonkwe was a lecturer in the same department. In a hushed tone, students of the department discussed the tragedy in groups.

While mourning their loss, another group of student emerged from Linguistic and Communication Studies department, singing dirge for yet another female student, Queeneth Patrick Akpan. She was in 300 level and reportedly died after complaining of toothache during the ASUU strike.

Expressing their grief, students of the affected department wore black clothes and went from their department to the main campus of the university, displaying placards with their names boldly written on them. Some were chanting dirge, while others shed tears.

Two of Francisca’s close friends, Queendalen and Peace Muonem described her as a cheerful student who looked forward to the day she would graduate. She was punctual to school and always sat on the front seat.

“It is very bad that we all started this battle together but unfortunately for them, they lost the battle to the cold hand of death,” Queendalen added.

Blaise Akpan, the emeritus financial secretary SUG and also the class governor expressed sorrow that these deaths mostly happen among the final year students. “I don’t know what is wrong,” he fumed.

Some of the aggrieved students who bemoaned their fate to liveschoolnews.org said that the death of final year students was quite disheartening. According to them, the joy of admission into higher institution is to graduate but sadly, death scuttled this dream.

Also, the President of Nigerian University Accounting Students Association, University of Calabar (NUASA UCC), Innocent Paul, bemoaned the sudden departure of Otonkwe, describing it as a monumental loss not only to Accounting department but to the entire faculty.

He described the late lecturer as a kind and easy going man, who gave a listening ear to students whenever they brought issues to him.

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