The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has vowed to storm the Kirikiri Prisons where the 13 University of Lagos students are detained if they are not released in 24 hours.
Chinonso Obasi, factional president of NANS, said the association was demanding the unconditional release of the detained students.
“After a painstaking review of the circumstances surrounding the draconian ruling, we have resolved to demand and hereby demand the unconditional release of these students within 24 hours,” he said.
“Consequently, we make bold to state that if at the expiration of our 24 hours ultimatum, these innocent students are not released without strings, we shall relocate the Headquarters of NANS to Kirikiri in solidarity with our members.
“We also hope that the authorities would use the opportunity of the 24 hours ultimatum to either expand the facilities of Kirikiri prison or release our colleagues, as they can see we are serious and determined by offering them a fair choice.
“Being first time offenders, the Magistrate, if ever he was once a University student, would have handed down a stern warning and demand of good behaviour instead of sending them to prison for whatever reasons.
“In saner climes what the Magistrate should have done was to certify that the suspects are bonafide students and release them to their school authorities or student leaders.
“But rather than factor in the extenuating circumstances of their protest, the Magistrate apparently in a hurry to please some hidden forces, decided to blunt the proper socialization of 13 Nigerian leaders of tomorrow.”
A special offences court, presided over by Magistrate P. E. Nwaka, ordered the 13 students to be remanded in prison custody for allegedly occupying the premises of Television Continental and adjourned the case until April 6 for determination of their bail.