'Yours In Arms' highlights how surrounding circumstances have shaped the day-to-day struggles and resilience of students preserving the history of a civilian-run infantry in Nigeria.

The establishment of paramilitary in institutions dates back to the Nigerian Second Republic [1976] under a militia regime headed by General Olusegun Obasanjo as a prospect to coax more educated fellows into the armed forces, soldiers would regularly come to inculcate military training in drills and parades, self-defense, physical fitness, first aid, citizenship, and leadership. Culturally, since its establishment, the program has been responsible for breeding a relative number of civilian youths dispersed throughout the nation, attached to a grass-rooted political scheme like this.

In modern times, the degree of pressure from being both CADET and STUDENT is considered an exhausting task. At Yaba College Of Technology alone, out of over 16,000 student enrolment, statistics show that approximately only 0.2% of this population usually makes the brave decision and chose to combine this extracurricular activity with school work and personal life.

My project examines the diverse realities of life as a student cadet through a proper account of their in-group activities and the socio-political roles these youths play within the Nigerian context. I was inspired to start this story because I was once a member of this organization. After finishing my service, It became clear how much I’ve been disconnected from their conventions over the years, rather than embrace them. Mostly because I found it extremely hard to bear this militia journey while managing other drastic social changes in my personal life. By reconnecting with these cadets and photographing their realities both vigorous and vulnerable phases, I am exploring the truth and fiction of military personnel all over the world.


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