Nigerians have expressed shock, anger, and disbelief on the microblogging site X.com following the brutal death of Alex Timileyi, a 200-level engineering student at Ajayi Crowther University in Oyo State. Timileyi was allegedly beaten to death by a fellow student on Saturday after being accused of stealing a mobile phone.

The incident reportedly occurred inside a hostel known as Shepherd Inn on the school premises. Timileyi was found with the stolen phone and subsequently subjected to a severe beating, which included having his hair forcibly shaved.

An anonymous source within the school revealed that the beating began at 6 p.m. on Friday and continued until around 10 a.m. on Saturday. “They said they caught him with a stolen phone. They started beating him from 6 p.m. yesterday (Friday) until he died at about 10 a.m. today (Saturday). The incident happened at ‘Shepherd Inn’. They also shaved the hair of the guy before beating him,” the source stated.

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Videos shared with our correspondent on Saturday night showed Timileyi being beaten with sticks by other students while rolling on the hostel floor. In one video, a student can be heard encouraging others to hit him “harder, harder.”

The university responded swiftly by expelling some of the students involved in the incident and denied that the suspects were members of a cult group. University spokesperson Femi Atoyebi described the event as “the unfortunate death of the student.” He stated, “Contrary to what is trending, the university affirms that there is no cultism in the institution, just as the university has zero tolerance for any sort of anti-social vices and misconduct. It is important to stress that the expelled students do not belong to any cult group.”

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Atoyebi explained that the expelled students acted out of uncontrolled emotions rather than reporting the issue to university management. He assured that the university had handed over the suspects to the Nigeria Police Force for investigation, with a commitment that justice would be served.

The incident has sparked widespread demands for a thorough investigation and justice for the slain student. Activist @Lord_of_Warri, identifying Timileyi as a prince and first cousin to the Olú of Warri Kingdom, Ogíamè Atuwatsé III, wrote an open letter to Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, urging him to ensure justice is served.

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Other users on X.com echoed similar sentiments. @Jessica_Egbedi questioned why the accused wasn’t handed over to school authorities, while @Jojo_Amandy compared the attackers to Boko Haram, stressing the prevalence of lawlessness. @FaventM and @HENRYDAVIE10116 also criticized the behavior of the students and called for thorough investigations and sanctions.

The tragic incident highlights ongoing concerns about violence and the need for proper conflict resolution mechanisms within educational institutions.