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Nigerian Chess master Tunde Onakoya takes on a mission to break Guinness World record


Nigerian Chess master Tunde Onakoya takes on a mission to break Guinness World record

Tunde Onakoya, a Nigerian chess master and philanthropist, is on a mission to break the Guinness World Record for the longest chess marathon. His dedication to this endeavor reflects his commitment to providing opportunities for underprivileged youth, particularly in marginalized areas of Africa.

Onakoya’s journey began in the slums of Ikorodu, Lagos, where he learned to play chess at a local barber’s shop. Despite financial challenges, his mother’s sacrifice enabled him to pursue education and excel in chess. He later became the 13th-ranked chess player in Nigeria.

Onakoya founded Chess in Slums Africa, a volunteer-driven organization aiming to empower children in impoverished communities through chess. He has organized interventions in slums across Lagos state, offering educational sessions that combine chess with literacy skills development.

Chess in Slums Africa has partnered with organizations like Chess.com to expand its reach and impact. By June 2021, over 200 children had received training, with 20 of them securing lifelong scholarships. Onakoya’s efforts have garnered attention, with notable achievements such as Ferdinand, a 10-year-old boy with cerebral palsy, winning a chess tournament.

Onakoya’s achievements extend beyond his philanthropic work. He holds a diploma in computer science and has excelled in chess competitions, winning titles such as the National Friends of Chess and the Chevron Chess Open. He has also been featured on CNN African Voices.

Onakoya’s attempt to break the world record for the longest chess marathon reflects his dedication to his cause. Through this endeavor, he hopes to inspire and support millions of children across Africa who lack access to education.

Tunde Onakoya’s journey from the slums of Ikorodu to the global stage exemplifies resilience and determination. His efforts to empower youth through chess highlight the transformative power of education and mentorship. As he strives to break the world record, Onakoya continues to be a beacon of hope for marginalized communities across Africa.

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