Oxbridge Marks Independence Day

The afternoon of the 2nd of October marked the start of Oxbridge Tutorial College’s Independence Day celebrations; an event highly anticipated by OTC students, as it was the first school function of the 2015/2016 school session. The day promised to showcase the various cultures in Nigeria, and the country’s overall beauty and it did not fail to deliver! The ISA ([International School Awards) programme was also a major item on the agenda as it presented the opportunity for students to exhibit their knowledge of the different countries allocated to their various Houses. David (of A2 Sciences) and Mayowa were the delightfully captivating hosts of the day.

The event kicked off in patriotic style in the school assembly hall with the singing of the national anthem and pledge. Afterwards, the identities of the ISA judges were finally revealed to be Mr. Kurup, Mrs. Kolawole, Mr. Atoyebi and Ms. Brenda. A 15 minute video detailing the history of the formation of Nigeria was played by Mr. Abrahams, much to the delight of the students. Thereafter, Femi Onifade and I delivered speeches; with me speaking on Nigeria from a global perspective, detailing my experience when I arrived in Nigeria (having lived in South Africa beforehand) as a Zimbabwean national. Femi declaimed the need for unity in Nigeria beyond the geographical sense. Both speeches attracted cheers and resounding rounds of applause from the crowd, thus paving the way for a memorable event.

The ISA programme kicked off with Azikiwe House set to present first. Headed by Jeremiah Kadri, they spoke on the Middle Eastern region with various House members  coming up to tell the crowd what they had found out about the Middle East’s cultures, religions, delicacies and dressing. Being the first House to present, the team lacked confidence, but their attires were beautifully presented.

Awolowo House (led by TomiwaAdeyemo) then demonstrated their knowledge of their allocated country: India. The group wasted time on their PowerPoint presentation (which had too many words per slide), but their overall content was commendable for its comprehensive nature, as well as the humorous Bollywood trailers they played. The judges seemed pleased by the video on the Festival of Colour, which was eventually played as well.

The presentation on China followed suit, with Soyinka House taking centre stage. The eventual winners of the ISA program did a sterling job with their concise PowerPoint presentation (compiled by House Captain Amarachi Tony-Ubah). Their Chinese traditional ensembles were humorously displayed, much to the merriment of the students and judges.

Balewa House was the last House to present with their country being Nigeria. The House (under Dolapo Adamson’s leadership) had a very brief PowerPoint presentation. They paraded Edo, Yoruba and Igbo native outfits as well various Nigerian dishes.

Afterwards, the judges went around to the four Houses’ stands, tasting their dishes and asking House members questions about their allocated country. The MD of the school, Dr. Mrs. Ogunsanya, looked stunning in her green traditional garb, as she went to each of the Houses’ stands as well, conversing heartily with the House captains. Meanwhile, students were served light treats as they waited for the judges to settle down and make their final decision on the winning house.

The final aspect of the event was the Drama club presentation on The Need for Nigeria’s Unity. The performers sang and danced passionately, and then they heartily cheered on Uyiosa and Dalu(both AS students) during a traditional wrestling scene. The crowd especially appreciated Amarachi (A2) and Dalu’s duet as well as the dramatic scrabble for Nigeria between the Igbos, the Yorubas and Hausas, which eventually led to the ethnic groups realising that they need each other to make Nigeria great. A quick cultural attire parade capped off the event, with Joshua (IFY) and Mayowa (AS) crowned the Best Dressed Male and Female Students of the day respectively. Mr. Vigo and Mrs. Omotade were crowned the Best Dressed Staff.

Mr. Atoyebi announced the Houses respective positions, with Soyinka House deservingly crowned the champions, whilst Awolowo House took second position, with Balewa and Azikiwe Houses in third and fourth positions respectively.

A big shout out to the organising committee of OTC’s Independence Day celebrations and the charismatic hosts David and Mayowa for a job well done! The event was a huge success .Thanks to their hard work and tireless effort.

Denise Danda