The lecturer attacked by a 400-level student of the University of Ilorin, Waliyullah Salaudeen, Rahmat Zakariya, has shared her side of the story.
Recall that Salaudeen had claimed that he attacked the lecturer at the Department of Microbiology over an alleged disagreement over the SIWES programme.
Zakariya in an interview with Daily Trust disclosed that Waliyullah didn’t deny any of her accounts when he was questioned by the police on the case.
Salaudeen after the incident was expelled by the school authority and handed over to the police
The lecturer, when asked if she threw a mug at the student when he entered her office, said, “The story of me throwing a mug at him is baffling to me. What chance did I have? There was none. This was someone who barged into my office and was saying I sent someone to kill him. He was banging on my table and punching me. So, how is it possible for me to throw a mug at him?”
Zakariya who was questioned on her relationship with Salaudeen, said, “I have seen a lot of publications that said that I’m his Level Adviser and supervisor. But none of this is true. I’m neither his Level Adviser nor Supervisor, I’m just a lecturer at the department and the SIWES Coordinator.”
The Unilorin lecturer while speaking on her contact with the student disclosed that it was around November 11th, 2021, when he came to meet her claiming that he spent a month on his SIWES.
She further stated that Salaudeen stated that he was sick and couldn’t attend the SIWES programme.
Zakariya added, “he said he was ill. I told him to get his medical report to show that he was truly ill and take it to where he did his SIWES, he could be lucky and they may be compassionate enough if he was diligent when he was there to help him endorse the remaining part of the logbook and he left. He didn’t show up again. Then, I met him again on the university walkway and inquired why I didn’t see him again and if he has gotten his medical report. He said he had sent for it but he was yet to receive it. I was wondering why a medical report will become such an issue if truly he was sick. Then about two days after, I met him with his Level Adviser and I said he has to re-register SIWES. But the level adviser only smiled when I was giving him the way around it.”
The Unilorin lecturer while speaking on how SIWES works in the university disclosed that it is the largest unit required to bag a Bsc – 6 credits, which is larger than the project.
She added that students are expected to present everything they experienced during the programme and Salaudeen in his own case did not present.
Zakariya noted that the level adviser of the affected student disclosed that despite the issues with his SIWES, he would still have spilled for two more years and he didn’t even come at all for the first semester exams he registered for.
The lecturer when asked if she did anything to get the student angry said, “no, I didn’t insult him whatsoever before and now. When he barged into my office, he did so with a smile on his face. The courteous thing was to knock and open but he just pushed the door with force, addressing me by my name that Zakariya why am I after his life and why did I send one Azeez to come and kill him. He was asking me in Yoruba how much I paid the people I sent to kill him. What do I have to do with someone of such character?”
She further stated, “not at all. And that was why I felt initially that there was a mixed up and I started pleading with him to calm down. Then he started banging on my table, asking what can I do to him, swearing and using the F-word. Imagine him telling me that. All of a sudden, he moved closer to my chair and started punching me and by that time I was already screaming for help.”
Zakariya noted that the student while she was attacked threatened to kill two students who were in the inner lab before he kills her.
The Unilorin lecturer noted that she ran out when the suspect went out threatening that she would not try it with him again in his life.
She disclosed, “yes, I had now gone outside opening several doors to my colleagues’ offices screaming for help but none of them was available. So, when he noticed I couldn’t get any help, he turned back and started chasing me until we got to the General Lab. When I got there, I quickly locked the door and he kept banging the door. There were two offices inside the general lab but they were both locked. When he noticed that I had locked the door, he went to the window and broke the louvres with his bare hands, I was shocked.
“He then removed his shoe and used it to clear the broken pieces to enable him to enter without getting injured. Although he was strapping a bag, I didn’t see him with any weapon or ammunition. But after that action, I was sensitive to the fact that he might want to use the broken pieces of the Louvres to stab me. So, I quickly went back to the door, open it and started running.
“He entered through the window and continued pursuing me. He was able to catch up with me and started punching me while I was on the ground, that was the video that many people saw. But that was his third attempt at trying to kill me. If you look at the video properly, you will see that it was until the person who came handed me over to someone else before he was able to chase him. He was initially walking away majestically.
“He wanted to leave me at that point because he felt I was unconscious and he has accomplished his aim. It was just God that saved me, Alhamdulillah.”
Zakariya stated that the incident would not change her relationship with other students as she has influenced a lot of students in her 8 years journey in the university.
She ended her view about the incident with this advice, she said, “We should all try our best to bring up our children in the fear of Allah. We should all play our part and leave the rest to God, that is it. I pray God will have mercy on us with the level of moral decadence. I hope parents are learning from this episode. Though I don’t know how that boy was raised, but we should all instil the fear of God in our children.”