Actor, Owolabi Ajasa, took Nigerians by surprise when pictures of him in the National Youth Service Corps orientation camp in Kogi State were posted online. Many felt that he was above the age of 30 and should have applied for an exemption from the service.
However, in a chat with Sunday Scoop, Ajasa explained his reason for answering the ‘clarion call.’ He said, “It is a simple matter. It all depends on the time you finish your tertiary education. If you are over 30 at that time, you can choose to seek exemption from service but I chose not to do that. I also decided to ‘serve’ because I am the first graduate in my family and it really meant a lot to me. That’s why I wrote on social media that I broke a jinx in my family by observing NYSC.
“I attended Moshood Abiola Polytechnic in Abeokuta, Ogun State, and I studied Marketing. As filmmakers, marketing is also part of our job. Though there are people who market our films, it is not a crime if we sell our films ourselves. I still have plans to return to school to study more because knowledge always keeps evolving.”
Speaking on his experience in camp, Ajasa said, “It was a very great experience. I met many youth corps members and we interacted well. We had a lot of fun times together. I wasn’t really treated like a celebrity in camp. Most of the officials in the Kogi camp were from Benue State and many of them didn’t recognise me because they don’t watch Yoruba movies since they don’t understand the language.