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Excitement, camaraderie and unity as university lifts ban on Social Week

9 November 2023
Reading time: 3 minutes

Participants express satisfaction, happiness and love for one another during Social Week, saying the event gave meaning to the expression unity in diversity among the students on campus.

There was much excitement, camaraderie and laughter at the University of Maiduguri during Social Week when hundreds of students closed their textbooks for seven days and just went out and had some fun.

The Social Week festivities were banned at the university in 2018 because of the insecurity that prevailed at the time.
But this year, Professor Aliyu Shugaba, the university’s vice-chancellor, decided to lift the ban because of the improved security.

The festivities, organised by the students’ union government, ran from Saturday, October 28 until Saturday, November 4. It was a celebration and a time for relaxation for all students before the coming end-of-term exams.
Each day the students – from first year to final year – took part in themed activities. On Saturday, Sunday and Monday they celebrated Cultural Carnival Day; on Tuesday Corporate Day; on Wednesday Old School Day; on Thursday Back-to-School Day; on Friday Jersey Day; and on Saturday Historic Day.
On Back to School Day, for example, the entire student community, gathered on the long tennis court, “radiating infectious enthusiasm and dressed in different high-school uniforms,” the union said. 

It said there was great jubilation, especially among the final-year students who, after writing their last exams, would be beginning the next exciting phase of their lives “armed with ambition and an unwavering thirst for knowledge”.

Sadiya Muhammad Umar, a 300-level (third-year) student, was enthusiastic about Social Week.

“I really enjoyed the activities. After all the studying and tests, it came as a welcome relief and definitely reduced our stress levels. Spending so much time studying can be rather dull. I feel refreshed and more motivated to continue my studies.”

“It’s been quite a few years since Social Week was banned. You could see the joy on everyone’s faces and hear laughter coming from all quarters – especially from the final-year students. It will be an unforgettable experience for them.

“I took part in many of the activities, such as Cultural Carnival Day, Corporate Day, Old school Day, Back-to-School Day and Jersey Day. We spent most of the time laughing and having fun. It was a great experience.”

Isaac Dala, a 500-level (fifth-year) law student, said this was the first Social Week he had attended.

“It was a bright and colourful occasion. I am so happy the university has lifted the ban. I have never attended such a grand celebration. It was a week that we will remember for a long time. It celebrated social cohesion and peace at the university.”

Munir Hassan Nababa, president of the university’s students’ union government, said: “The rationale behind the university bringing back Social Week was because of improved security. The challenges of the insurgency affected the whole of Borno State including its education institutions, which experienced attacks by the insurgents who raped, abducted and killed many schoolchildren and students – and even some teachers and lecturers.

“But all that was forgotten during Social Week, which I believe promoted unity and tolerance among the students, despite ethnic and religious differences. Students expressed satisfaction, happiness, unity and love for one another during the event. It gave meaning to the expression ‘unity in diversity’ among the students on campus.”


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