The Senate of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO), Imo State has cautioned those involved in the persistent incursions on its land to desist from such act.
At a press conference addressed by senior members of the university, including the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Governing Council, Dr. Emma Enemuo in Owerri, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Francis Eze lamented that despite extensive benefits handed out to the host communities which include; free medical attention, employments, favourable admission policies amongst others, acts of encroachment on the university land have persisted and robbing the university of worthwhile projects.
He said: “this illegal incursion and constant threats of annexation of FUTO by some isolated opinion leaders of the host communities and other persons have recently assumed intolerable dimension.”
The VC particularly lamented the recent invasion of a large expanse of the land belonging to the university along the Avu/Obinze axis on the Owerri-Port Harcourt Road, which was allocated for the siting of the University’s Medical School and Teaching Hospital.
He, therefore, called on the Federal Government to make funds available to enable the institution fence its 4,500-hectare of land, in order to ward off land speculators adding that if the university had access to adequate fund at its inception in 1982 it would have secured the lands.
“We have been used to the occasional demonstrations by some women and youths sponsored by some elites of the host communities over purported lost of their land to FUTO.
During such occasions, authorities of the FUTO had always made them understand that the land was freely given and legally acquired.
“We have had a long history of forced entry, disruption of university activities, destruction of FUTO property, molestation of staff, culpable invasion and even plotting and selling of university land,” he added.