By Ozumi Abdul
The impression that average northerners cannot favorably compete with their contemporaries from other extractions or regions in the areas of academics, technology, sport, fashion, and entertainment is by every passing day becoming a stereotypical belief deepened in mischiefs.
The chicken has now finally come home to roost, and like lies that run sprints while truth runs a marathon, all the falsehoods about the lack of productivity of northern Nigeria youth have been laid bare to the public.
For instance, late last year, Thirty youngsters from northern Nigeria who are under the age of 30 were honoured by Arewa Agenda, a publication of Image Merchants Promotion Limited (IMPR) – publishers of PRNigeria and other titles in collaboration with Daily Nigeria for their outstanding success in various areas which include innovation, arts, technology, sports, entertainment, activism, humanitarian work, social media impact, etc.
Tagged “30 Under 30 Arewa Stars,” the maiden award ceremony was held in Kano to celebrate the best brains from the North who are making impacts and inspiring others.
The 30 superstars were selected from over 300 nominees by a team of judges led by Dr. Kabir Sufi and made up of scholars, senior journalists, business leaders, and tech icons assembled by the organisers.
Another northerner putting the name of the region, as well as the entire country on the global map now is Martins Iyeh, who recently won Mr. Nigeria International – Northern King.
Martin Iyeh is a model, actor, and fashion enthusiast. The Igala-born fashion enthusiast, actor, and model hail from the Dekina Local Government Area of Kogi State.
He obtained a Diploma certificate in Civil Law from the prestigious Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, while currently pursuing his first-degree certificate in Archeology from the same university.
Also a former Team Captain of the ABU Basketball Team (2019/2020), Martins is the Founder and President of Rave Model Look Nigeria, a modeling agency based in Kaduna State. The organization he founded in 2018 but formally registered in 2022 with the Corporate Affairs Commission has been helping to improve the socio-economic well-being of hundreds of youth from the region.
Martins tersely had this to say about his modeling organization during my exclusive interview with him recently:
“The brand houses an academy: Rave Models Academy, where youths are taken off the streets and trained into becoming impeccable models with poise, sleekness, and glamorous walking steps.
“After their training, a platform is created where light is shone on their skill (and sometimes, talent) through runway modeling. Regardless, they are always encouraged to go to school and most are students who model part-time”, he said.
The Founder, Martins Iyeh, is a shining example. He has gone through the rigorous stages of modeling while yet a student and now represents the North in the Northern Youth for Peace Network. This is a result of the pageantry he participated in, in April 2023: Mr. Nigeria International.
He was first scouted by Arsopel Perl Asopo in 2015, who has been constantly training and grooming him over the years, till he ventured into his own art which has metamorphosed into a modeling agency.
Rave Models Academy has graduated several sets of models and also includes Exhibitions as part of its objectives. These exhibitions are forums that bring people and society at large together to behold the beauty and art of modeling.
It goes beyond entertainment as people are also educated on thought-provoking and critical contemporary phenomena.
In 2022, the theme for the year’s Rave Model Exhibition was “Cultural Identity”. The aim was to address the subtle yet alarming disunity amongst the diverse tribes in Nigeria and urge them to come together in oneness and harmony while shunning all forms of violence, segregation, and pomposity. Rave Models Academy strives to pass a positive message across to its audience by creatively using models on the runway. This activity also keeps the models, who are youths, engaged thus, leaving no room for idleness.
Martins, through his modeling agency and academy, aims to impact more youths positively years from now; not only in Northern Nigeria but the whole country and the entire world.
He hopes to keep educating them on the essence of living and life in general and why they have to strive instead of staying idle because; “An idle mind is the devil’s workshop”.
Keep up with the good work Martins
I love your spirit and hope for your success🙏🙏