Olumayowa Okediran was ‘slaving away for the government’ in a poultry farm housed in small a village, Fashola, during his National Youths Service Corps – a compulsory one year scheme by Nigerian government where graduates are deployed to various states for work – when he thought of launching forth African Liberty Students Organisation (ALSO), an organisation he founded in college, to a large audience.
On Fashola’s farm, Olumayowa was tending to the chickens, but was saddened with the management of the enterprise. According to him, “it was very unproductive, I kept pondering why the farm had not been sold to a private investor to manage it. They were making huge losses—it was unsustainable, and it was a waste of money.”
Frustrated with this reality, Olumayowa, a graduate of Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, in 2013, founded African Students For Liberty (ASFL), an offshoot of U.S. based Students For Liberty, to promote the ideas of individual and economic freedom to students across Africa. He has nurtured the organisation to be the continent’s largest libertarian student network with a membership base of over 6,000 students and over 200 trained leaders who commit to a year-long engagement with ASFL.
In an interview with Jillian Keenan, the Assistant Director of International Programs at SFL, sheds more light on the libertarian student movement in Africa, ASFL’s advocacy efforts, and the joy of young people marching on with the ideas of liberty now than ever before.