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Abass Oyeyemi

Musician, Segun Akinlolu, professionally known as Beautiful Nubia, has joined several students and alumni of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State, to mourn a former student leader of the institution, Abass Oyeyemi.

Oyeyemi died in the early hours of Thursday, May 25, 2023.

He served as a member of the Electoral Commission of the Students’ Union and was also an ex-Public Relations Officer of the Muslim Students Society of Nigeria, OAU chapter.

In a post via his Twitter handle on Thursday night, Beautiful Nubia said it hurt to the bone to lose such a vibrant young soul.

“Of what use are words at a time like this? We can console ourselves with ‘it is not how long but how well.’ Still, it hurts to the bone to lose a vibrant young soul,” the musician tweeted, posting a picture of himself and Oyeyemi.

“I pray for strength and calm for those who knew and loved him dearly. We must carry on his memory and good deeds,” he added.

Beautiful Nubia and late Abass Oyeyemi

The deceased was recently mobilised for the National Youth Service Corps and redeployed to Osun State from Akwa Ibom.

He was the founder of Tekisite, a non-governmental organisation that trained students in tech skills.

In 2022, Oyeyemi spoke to BBC Yoruba about how he, through his NGO, trained 1500 students in tech skills using their mother tongue, the Yoruba language.

“Truly, the computer is programmed in the English language, but we were training students in the rural areas, we had to do it using Yoruba language so they could understand,” he told BBC Yoruba.

The cause of Oyeyemi’s death was still sketchy as of press time, but close sources revealed that he had “difficulty in breathing” before he was rushed to the Seventh Day Adventist Hospital in Ile-Ife. The news of his demise later broke in the day.

The OAU chapter of the MSSN in a statement on Thursday announced the postponement of its activities for the week in honour of the deceased.

“It is with deepest regrets that we announce the indefinite postponement of all Jihad week programmes. This is as we received the sad news of the death of our brother, Abass Oyeyemi (Bazzman), who was called by his Lord this morning.

“Until his death, he was well known for his active drive in inspiring and creating opportunities for youths. He was also a former PRO of the MSSN OAU in the 2017/2018 session.

“We ask Allah to accept his return and admit him into Jannah. Aameen,” the statement signed by the Ameer of the association, Abdulrazaq Ibrahim, stated.

Speaking further, he said Oyeyemi’s death came as a shock, saying he was someone who was very active.

“We are currently on our way to Ayetoro for his burial,” he told The PUNCH earlier in the day.

A member of the Students’ Union Representatives Council, Sumbade Jr, in a post on social media, said, “We still shook hands after a football match on Wednesday, he was in the NYSC uniform. This life is too short. Rest well, my comrade.”

Several alumni of the institution and friends also expressed sadness over the incident.

“Abass’ death is the most sudden and least expected news. It emphasises the ephemerality of life. His death broke a lot of us and I don’t think anything can fill the vacuum he left for us,” an alumnus, Azeez Babatunde, said.

“It’s shocking. We lost one of the brightest minds of our generation, someone committed to developing our society. Abraham Lincoln said don’t think about what America would do for you but think about what you’ll do for America. In respect to Nigeria, this was the life Abass Oyeyemi lived.

“He was an innovator of social and community development programmes. It’s sad seeing him leave when he still has much more to offer,” another alumnus, Ogundare Bright, stated in a chat with our correspondent.

Oyeyemi, 24, graduated from the Faculty of Law of the institution in 2022.