The chairman of the students’ week of the Nigerian institute of journalism, Adebayo Damilare, a.ka. Black Boy, is not happy about some things and bares his mind in this interview with The Eagle Correspondent, ODUNAYO AKINREMI.
Could you please give a background of yourself?
My name is Adebayo Damilare, and I a Higher National Diploma (HND) 2 student in Broadcast. But most of the students call me Black Boy, though i don’t think I’m black.
Since your appointment as the students’ week chairman, what have you been able to do?
Well, upon my appointment, i came up with a committee, and that committee has been able to help me design the activities of the week, like the different things we would do to make the students’week interesting, glamorous, and fun filled.
We have six days for the students’ week, and we have been able to assign each day to an activity that the students will benefit from socially and partly academically.
In terms of implementation, we would like to have an update on the preparations thus far.
So far so good, we have been writing series of letters, holding various meetings with different brands and organisations. We are also doing the same with individual personalities as per participating and partnering with us to achieve our outlined goals towards the week.
We are partnering with firms including UBA, GTBank, Coca Cola, indomie, Etisalat, Naira Bet, Ecobank and lots of other brands that I cannot mention now. And we are confident of getting good bargains from them. Though they are making different promises, trust me, with faith in God, we believe we will achieve our targets.
In terms of the different programmes for the week, are there innovations that were not there before that are there now?
Yes, yes. We have introduced innovations this year that were not part of NIJ students’ week before now. Let me give you an example with Thursday, and we would be having a throwback party, and there would also be carnival. The students’ week started during the era of Mr Ola Abraham Emmanuel popularly known as Africa, and this is the 9th edition of the week, and i don’t think there is any edition that has had it like this.
So, we actually looked back in time, and we came up with innovations like the throwback carnival, and we also redesigned the pageantry. The pageantry we would be having is not what you have always seen. What you see on television is what we want to bring into reality, in terms of lighting, ecstatic in terms of beauty and glamour. Also on Tuesday, which is for the cultural day, we are bringing different types of cultural activities.
We have a masquerade coming to dance; we have someone coming to act like sango with fire coming out of his mouth, and so many innovations that have never been seen.
Let me burst your bubbles. In the history of NIJ we have always had one artiste performing but this time around, we have artistes. Watch out, don’t let me run my mouth.
We Know Various Committees Have Been Set Up, Are You Satisfied With The Level Of Commitment of these committees?
Yes, I am satisfied, thank you very much.
To what extent Sir?
How Many In Number Are Your Committees?
Twenty six and this is the first time in the history of NIJ we would be having that? This year will erase the notion of calling the NIJ students’ week, HND2 week, No, it is NIJ students’ week.
My committee members cut across all the levels on campus. And I am proud to say that even my classmates are being carried along but they are not the majority in my committees.
How Do You Intend To Mobilise The Students
What I Mean Is, How Have You Been Doing That?
Good. NIJ is a very small school, and one thing we will always say about NIJ is that we know ourselves. You can see the four walls of NIJ from every point where you are standing in NIJ. The classes are close to each other.
What we are doing is that we are using social media, one;, and we are doing class to class publicity. Also, we are using social directors in the classes to communicate and to pass message across to the student across all levels.
How About The School Management Are You Carrying Them Along?
Yes, the school management has to be carried along definitely There is a popular saying in Yoruba, which when interpreted means whatever you want to do, whatever you want to say, whatever activity you want to go on campus, has to be approved by the management, so we are carrying them along.
In Terms Of Funding, Do You Have The Money To Organise A Good Week?
So, How Do You Intend To Source The Fund?
As the students’ week chairman, people assume that I am rich. Yes, I am rich, rich in good health, rich in cloths, and thank God for His grace.
So they think I am rich and that was why they made me the chairman, and I will shock them.
The school actually funded the larger part of the budget for the students’ week and with support from various organisations that we have written to, I believe that something will be done.
Generally, What Challenges Have You Been Facing Concerning The Week And How Do You Intend To Overcome Them?
There is nobody that won’t face challenges. The major challenge is that NIJ is a well known institution when it comes to Mass Communication as a course, but I am sorry to say that i am disappointed with all the students on campus because we refuse to practice what we have been taught in class. We need everybody to make their social media active with the #tag XLR8 ‘’19, but the students are not even practising what they are being taught. We need the students to support the committee members in terms of publicity.
Did You Inform The Students To Support You In The Area Of Publicity?
Yes, even you interviewing me, you have refused to post it on facebook, you don’t have it on your status or your twitter.
Is There Anything Else You Would Like To Tell Us?
The only thing that I have to add is that the growth, the change, the development we want begins from us, and even you the interviewer. Pass the message across to your class mates and let them do the needful. Let them publicise the students’ week. Thank you very much and enjoy your day.
Thank You Very Much For Your Time.