Adekunle Adepeju, was the first Undergraduate Victim of Police Shooting in Nigeria, he was a second-year Agricultural Science Student of the University of Ibadan, he was shot dead by the Police on Monday February 1, 1971, during, a student riot at the University of Ibadan.
Kunle Adepeju was one of my room mates at Victory College Ikare during our Higher School Certificate days. We often went to the court premises in lkare to listen court proceedings when we had little to do, while waiting for our School certificate results.
During our first year in 1966, we both competed in University debate contest, where among other students he came first, while l was in the 2nd position.
We were admitted into the University of Ibadan in 1968 and were put in the same hall, Mellanby Hall.
We were in a 3 man team that represented University of lbadan in a debate competition against the Legon University Ghana and won both the home and away editions of the debate competition in 1970.
On Feb 1,1971, we had lunch sitting by each other at the Mellanby Hall, after which we took our packet of ice cream.
Immediately after this, he stood and told me he was going to the war front- (venue was in front of Queen’s Hall in U.I), where students and the police were in a running battle with stones and tear gas.
He told me he was going there and would tell everyone to begin singing the National Anthem.
A few minutes after this, we had the sound of a gun shot, and an lbo student who had just returned to the campus after the end of the Nigerian Civil War, informed us that what we heard was the sound of Mark 1V, a deadly gun.
Kunle Adepeju was shot in the head and he died on the spot.
May his soul rest in perfect peace. Amen.
Ade Ayeni was a former General Manager NTA Ibadan, and Managing Director OSRC TV Akure
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