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I boarded a plane first time ever in 2022 -Chess master Tunde Onakoya

Record-breaking chess master Tunde Onakoya had narrated how his interest in chess and devotion to the game is opening unprecedented doors for him.

Speaking at the venue of his history-making Guinness World Records event in New York on Saturday, the child education advocate revealed that he grew up in the slums.

Onakoya said the first time he got on a plane to leave Lagos in Nigeria was two years ago.

He added that playing chess enabled him to discover his potential.

“What we are advocating for is that there are millions of children without access to opportunities like us.

“And it is important that they feel seen, just the way the rest of the world sees me now because of my capacity to do this thing that everyone seems so marveled by.

“But in reality, I also grew up in the slums like these kids. The first time I ever left Lagos was just two years ago.

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“The first time I ever got on a plane to leave my country was two years ago. Chess gave me an opportunity to find out what I could truly become.

“And I think that’s the greatest gift that you could ever give anyone, by helping them see their potential.”

Onakoya commenced his GWR attempt to break the world record for the longest chess marathon last Wednesday.

The marathon held at Times Square in New York City, during which Onakoya played different games for 58 hours without losing any. He capped his record with an extra 2 hours, totaling 60 hours in all on Saturday.

When he declared his intention for the GWR, he said he wanted to use the platform to also raise $1m to empower illiterate children across Africa through his Chess in Slums Africa, a nongovernmental organisation.

So far, the fundraiser has garnered over $108,000.

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