Fourah Bay: Sierra Leone university closed by students

image captionSome students were taking exams when the protests broke out

Protesting students have forced the closure of the University of Sierra Leone, the oldest in West Africa.

The BBC's Umaru Fofana says about 1,000 students have burnt tyres and changed the padlocks on the buildings at the university, also known as Fourah Bay.

The protests follow the expulsion of 31 students for leading the occupation of hostels, says our reporter.

The hostels have been closed for two years, which the students say is making life hard for those from poor families.

Some students were taking exams when the protests broke out - these have been postponed.

The university officials are holding a crisis meeting to discuss the situation.

Last year, final exams at the university were delayed when the university ran out of paper.

Fourah Bay College was founded in 1827.

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