Bio

12

I was born in the early 70s in Islington, London. My dad had come over to the UK for a course at the School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine at the University College London with my three-month pregnant mum. I was taken to Nigeria just before my first birthday, where I was to spend the next 24 eventful years of my life.

During this time, I developed my natural flair for art and music; I also was passionate about learning in general: Geography, Mathematics, Religious Knowledge and Physics especially, fascinated me. In fact, I narrowly missed out on my secondary school’s Geography prize by 2 marks. I remember having discussions as a teenager with my neighbour and friend – now a Physicist – about ‘abstract’ concepts like time-travel. Such was my hunger for knowledge outside my traditional forté.

I played the recorder at primary school, the trumpet and trombone at secondary school – where I was made ‘band major’ by my very gifted music teacher Mr Michael Kweisi Kludze. I was also a chorister during my years here where Mr Kludze led us to 3 consecutive Choral Competition victories – sponsored by The Shell Petroleum Development Corporation. Incidentally, my dad was a Shell Scholar in London in the picture above.

While still at secondary school in Nigeria, my school band was invited to play at the first, second and third Port Harcourt Jazz festivals alongside jazz greats like Geraldo Pino, https://www.facebook.com/pages/Geraldo-Pino/100194366692056 Femi Kuti  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Femi_Kuti and Doye Agama  https://www.google.co.uk/#q=Doye+Agama – who nearly two decades later, was to become my father-in-law.

I was probably more widely-known as an artist at the university campus where we lived from the age of 8 until I was 25. I participated in art exhibitions at the Hotel Presidential and at the University of Port Harcourt campus. While still at secondary school, my artwork of a Combine Harvester – which was exhibited at the Hotel Presidential – was selected nearly 6 years later, for publication by the United Nations to celebrate 50 years of its existence in 1995.

I also remember being the main illustrator of 3 books during the 90s – the first one by a former Science and Technology minister – Professor Turner Timipre Isoun; another by Professor Ebiegberi Joe Alagoa – emeritus professor of history and first professor Chancellor of Niger Delta University. see link –http://books.google.co.uk/books/about/Okpu.html?id=AHN0AAAAMAAJ&redir_esc=y The third, by Linguist, Professor Shirley Donwa-Ifode – http://www.librarything.com/work/4766595 – a close friend and colleague of my mom’s.

After graduating from the University of Port Harcourt, Nigeria with a second class honours, upper division (2:1) Bachelor of Arts degree in Graphic Communication Design, I came back to the UK, worked for a few years and proceeded to the University of Edinburgh nearly a decade later to study History of Art and Architecture. These – in addition to more than a few short courses I’d done over the years – were supposed to provide me with employment commensurate with my qualifications; all to no avail.

Out of frustration, and many, many failed business ventures, I turned to the internet and was soon introduced to Network Marketing or Multi-Level Marketing (MLM) in July 2008; I made up my mind to join my MLM Company two weeks after being shown the ‘unbelievable’ compensation plan by Mr Douglas ‘Doug’ Juru  https://www.google.co.uk/#q=Douglas+Juru – a Zimbabwean – who had been with the company for 3 months and was already on £3,000 a month; he went on to make £15.000 a month within his first 7 months! I wanted this soooo much! I wanted to escape the ‘rat-race’ for good; I was fed-up with my job but knew I couldn’t quit until I had replaced my income by a ratio of 2:1. That was the plan anyway.

To be continued…

 

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Sotonye Afiesimama

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Two of many endorsements I’ve received over the last few years.

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