BBN Special

Brilliant Blind Nigeria Seeks Help To School Abroad After Disappointed By Politician’s Wife

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Reading through the post of Damola Adeleke about his blind friend and his trajectory, one is forced to arrive at a simple conclusion that there is ability even in disability.


Damola recounted the inspiring story of his blind friend whose name he kept anonymous, who against all odds became a University graduate from the premier University of Nigeria, Nsukka with top notched writing skills even in his disability.


BlackBox Nigeria gathered that his flair for writing and determination not to leave school unemployed just like every average person in his situation made him sought help to further study abroad precisely at the Bournemouth University which was prompted by the promise of willingness by a Politician’s wife to sponsor him till the end of his programme abroad due to the economic status of his parents.


The touching story revealed that on securing the admission abroad after rigorous financial and intellectual efforts, the politician’s wife seem to have taken back her words and there is no longer hope of sponsorship from her any longer.


BlackBox Nigeria bring you below a detailed account of the travails, resilience and twist of fate of the Olomi- Ibadan based survival and how he has now resulted to soliciting the support of the general public not to let his dream of studying abroad die completely as the original start date for the new academic session was January 21st and admission expires June this year.



How it all started:

As a blind student, I knew life after university wouldn’t be a walk in the park. If the sighted graduates can have it rough, then the blind should get ready to have it rougher. Stories of some blind colleagues who had graduated long ago but ended up indoors after graduation, as a result of unemployment, gave me goose-flesh. I was scared, but with all convictions, I believed I might not go through the same experience if I could pursue a career in creative writing and become a don in it. I’ve grown interest in the field over the years and I felt studying the course in one of UK’s top universities will refine my crude writing skills.


So few months before my graduation from UNN, I wrote to the wife of a Nigerian politician, begging her to help me make the best out of my life by supporting my dream to seek professionalism in what I thought I could do best- creative writing. I went to Ifesinachi park in Nsukka to waybill the letter to my dad in Ibadan so he could help submit. I had to resort to that ancient style when I tried e-mailing the letter but dad gave me his e-mail address without the domain name- ‘.com’ in it . After like a week of submitting the letter to the woman, I received a call from her personal assistant, telling me that the politician’s wife had read my letter and was ready to help fulfill my dream.


The turning point:

The good news arrived on a Saturday morning when I was cooking my jollof rice and beans. I went bananas immediately the PA dropped the call and spent the rest of the day rejoicing in the hostel. People were of the opinion that I would go places, but I never knew it would happen by writing a mere letter. The news made off with my appetite for the food I was cooking and filled my stomach with colourful butterflies.  Nothing tasted good to me throughout that day except from my fingernails which I was biting occasionally.


As conditioned by the politician’s wife, I should pursue the admission in the UK University, get the admission and present her with the admission letter. If I did, she would pay for all my fees and sponsor me throughout the programme.


It was already 3 days to my degree exam in the university and I knew the application to the UK school would distract me a little, but I would sacrifice anything just to meet the condition given by the woman. On the following day, I went with Chuma Nweke-Oragwu to a spot in the university where there was Wi-Fi and began checking for UK universities with great history in creative writing. After a long review of schools in the UK, I eventually went for Bournemouth University and started applying to the school.


For my course, Creative Writing, I was to submit a portfolio of unpublished creative articles that are outstanding. All in the bid to impress the department and get admitted, I paid less attention to my degree exam and spent most of the time brainstorming, crafting and writing creative articles. In the midnight when I was supposed to be sleeping, reading for my exams or working on my project; I was on the laptop, writing, editing, deleting and rewriting the articles I wanted to submit with my application.


I ultimately went through that stage and the next requirement was to provide my passport. I rushed to my bag, got two passport photographs and handed them to my roomy helping me with the application. The guy chuckled over what I had given to him. Wait, international passport? I was discouraged. But then, I wouldn’t let the opportunity of studying my dream course pass me by, hence I hurriedly journeyed to Ibadan to get my intl passport at the immigration office, with my pocket-money and a little support from my retired dad. All I needed was my passport number, so I rushed back to Nsukka immediately I finished with the capturing process and requested that the passport number be sent to me once the passport was ready.


Tell me, does it seem to you like I was in a haste to get the admission and travel to the UK?  You’re right actually. But it wasn’t because of my overexcitement to travel abroad; rather, I wanted to get the admission quickly before the expiration of the well-meaning woman’s tenure in office. I was of the opinion that once she leaves office come May this year, it may be difficult for her to make reality of her promise.


The Bournemouth dream:

I started the application in early July (2018) and the stages seemed not to finish. After our project defence in school, many of my classmates travelled home and I followed suit. No sooner had I got home than Bournemouth Uni emailed me, requesting my undergraduate transcript. But because I didn’t have it and I needed to get the admission ASAP, I pleaded with my department to provide my 1st-3rd year transcript with an official letter attached to it.


If bitterness is sold for a dime, my exam officer and HOD shall not afford it. They gave in to my request without delay by computing my available results and authenticated it with a letter. Puah Omotueme was still in school at the time, so I had to send her to go help get the transcript from the department, scan and send to my e-mail.


I was at Damola Adeleke’s (sis) house on the day of my online interview with the programme leaders of my UK department. She had to drive me to a junction in her street and wound up the car windows in order to prevent noise from  entering. We did that cause of the poor network coverage in the house, and we were not ready to take chances. Missing the interview would automatically disqualify my application. By the time I finished the interview; I was almost breathless and was literarily soaked in my sweat.


My time, energy and expenses didn’t go to waste as I eventually got what I was looking for. On October 29, 2018, I received my admission letter from Bournemouth University. It was one happy day I recorded since the day I lost my sight and had to live without it afterwards.


Twist of fate:

But unfortunately, in an incredibly painful twist of fate, the politician’s wife who had promised to sponsor me was no longer in a position to do so. I got to know about it when I submitted the admission letter to her office and she showed no interest again.


Oh mai, I felt really bad. Her sponsorship promise led me on, it really did. Reminiscing what I went through just to get the admission gave me cold sweat. But then, it’s true that human being can disappoint, only God can’t. If only things worked out as planned, then I’ll be making today’s post from Bournemouth University, not from Olomi- Ibadan. My original start date was January 21st, so the plan was to go for the course and come back next year for NYSC.


Although the thought of losing the admission is not one that makes me happy, but I also wouldn’t fail to find truth in the saying: “you win some, you lose some”.


If my parents could afford the fees, I wouldn’t write to anyone for sponsorship let alone begging publicly for funds online. I wouldn’t be so scared of life after university let alone narrating this disappointment kind of story. Yeah, I know it’s too early to give up when I still have till July this year to raise the fees, but it’s also not bad to prepare my mind for an undesirable outcome, right?

Below his appeal to well-meaning Nigerians that can fund his scholarship dream:

Thanks to everyone who has in one way or the other shown me support, either by sharing the GoFundMe post or by suggesting some fully funded scholarships to me. I’m highly grateful guys.


Meanwhile, it’s pertinent to note that leaving the country is not my aim, but leaving the country to study my dream course. So don’t be offended if you gave some travelling suggestions and I showed no interest.


Finally, I’m not anyone’s responsibility, and my being blind shouldn’t bend you into sacrificing your little just to make mine bigger. No, it shouldn’t be like that. In other words, don’t donate to the GoFundMe account if you’re a dependent student like me or your salary is not great. My target are those who have some change to spare.


If I can survive without my sight, then you should know I can pull through disappointment without staggering a bit. But las las, we all go make money. .

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