Muraina Oyelami Tackling Youth Restiveness With Vocational Trainings


Muraina Oyelami Tackling Youth Restiveness With Vocational Trainings

Apart from the issues of insecurity and economic crisis, growing youth restiveness, occasioned in the main by joblessness, is another major debilitating factor militating against the attainment of peace, growth and sustainable development in the country.

Restiveness and joblessness among the youths have variously been attributed to many factors among which is the claim that most of the graduates coming out of the higher institutions of learning are not employable, due to no fault of theirs but the fact that the national educational curriculum is out of tune with the modern day reality.

The negative reality has, however, led to an increasing awareness on the need for the teeming youth population to embrace vocational training as a means to getting out of poverty and also to bring relief to the country.


It is in line with the above realities that Chief Muraina Oyelami deserves public mention, in view of the yeoman’s job his doing to ensure that, not only are youths well-trained, but also to make them self-reliant in the task of attaining a more secured future for themselves.

Oyelami, the Eesa of Iragbiji, is a renowned artist with global appeal. He is the founder and proprietor of Abeni Visual and Performing Arts Institute (AVPAI), located in his hometown, Iragbiji, Osun State.

He is a cultural enthusiast who is genuinely and deeply imbued with the passion and burning desire to train and bequeath new generation of artistes and artisans to the society.

The institute is involved in intensive practical training of students in the art of singing, chanting, drumming and dancing and various handiworks and Oyelami’s house can be said to be one of the best private museums in the country.

Recently, precisely on 7 April, 2021, AVPAI held the matriculation of its fresh students, but devoid of the pomp and pageantry often associated with such an event in the conventional higher institutions.

Away from the prying eyes of the public, the matriculation took place in the school premises, located on the newly-rehabilitated Iragbiji-Osogbo Road and in a conducive ambience surrounded by lush green vegetation, a semblance of what is obtainable in the European countries.

The matriculating students and their parents were ushered into the school premises in an event that was also witnessed by a sizeable of guest who came to honour the proprietor of the institute, Chief Oyelami.

Oyelami specifically choose to control traffic of friends of the institute who usually look forward to such occasion to express their support for the high chief. This explains why the guests were few and why the matriculation ceremony was held without any noise being made about it.

The management of the institute kept strictly to the timeframe for the event, mindful of the fact that it was taking place during the week and most of the guests were expected to return to their various places of work.

Demonstrating to the audience the quality of intensive training, including practicals, which is the hallmark of the institute, the matriculation ceremony was characterised by singing, chanting, drumming and dancing by the students of the institute.

The highpoint of the event was the presentation of certificates. This was done by the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the UK-based Aliviar Insurance Company, Otunba Babatunde Loye, alongside a chief.

Speaking after the event, Loye could not hide his admiration and astonishment over what he saw at the institute, the performance of the students and the facilities put in place at AVPAI.

The insurance magnate, a native of Ila-Orangun, also in Osun State, said he was very happy to be a part of the event and announced that he would be sponsoring about 15 new students in the institute.

He said when he visited the Orangun of Ila, Oba Abdulwahab Oyedotun, in his palace, the traditional ruler shared with him his worry about the growing joblessness among the youths in his domain and pleaded with him to select a few of them for the vocational programme at AVPAI, Iragbiji.

“I was touched when kabiyesi told me. Then I told him that if that was what he needed, I would do it. That is the background to my presence here today.

“And I am happy because what I see is an inspiration to do more, knowing that the students are in a safe hand and in an environment which is quite right for learning.

“I particularly appreciate the management of the institute and proprietor for this initiative to empower our young ones,” Loye said.

A former student of the institute, Ogunkeye Ronke, who is also a nurse by profession, said she would always be proud that she attended the three-month vocational programme, declaring that all she had learnt in the institute were currently complementing her income as a nurse.

She disclosed that, by virtue of her training at AVPAI, she is into the making of bags, vests, adire (tye and dye) and also silk screen printing, adding that she combines the trades with dance, which she also learnt from the institute.