When Akinyele (Wunderkind) Ademoyegun was declared the winner of the MTN mPulse spelling bee competition, he wore one of the widest smiles ever captured on camera. At that exact moment in Ikorodu, there was wild jubilation in the household.
In Akinyele’s words, “I felt excited, my mom was happy and my neighbours also came rejoicing.” Watching him make light work of some difficult words was magnificent to witness. It became evident that this cool, calm, and shy child is a genius in the making.
Those close to him can attest to his great character. In fact, when he was presented with his winnings at a ceremony in his school Kaydel Group of Schools, Ikorodu, Lagos. His mates were visibly proud of their friend with their cheers and loud claps, this led Omotayo George, the Senior Manager, Youth and Teens Segments, MTN Nigeria Communications Plc to say, “Yele is an example of who I will like my children to be.”
Akinyele’s mother, Victoria Ogunsami who is a trader, was visibly emotional at the ceremony. With tears glistening in her eyes, she said, “I was so happy and crying because I couldn’t believe it. Even now, I am still surprised. He has made me proud. He has made the school proud.”
For Akinyele, the journey to becoming the ultimate champion of the spelling bee competition was not a walk in the park. “I practised by reading the dictionary and checking online for the toughest words ever asked.”
This speaks volumes about the determination of this child, and this is no surprise to his English teacher, Mrs Anene Oluebube who declared, “My boy has made me proud. From inception, I knew he would be a champion because of his calmness, focus and determination. I knew he would go far.”
It is a popular saying that it takes a village to raise a child and this is evident at Kaydel Group of Schools. Mrs Ayodele Adunni, the Proprietress of the school, who in 2006 as Tutor General/Permanent Secretary of Education District 2 witnessed one of her students emerge winner of a prominent Lagos State spelling bee competition, introduced the spelling initiative to her own school.
“In fact, we hold spelling bee competitions for the Primary and Secondary school students during assembly. In each class, teachers conduct a spelling bee before the business of the day starts and we have been doing that since. That one of our students is excelling today is part of what we have been training them to do.”
The staff of the school are glad that one of their students has become the toast of the country. For Mrs Grace Adedipe, the School Administrator Kaydel Group of Schools, her excitement stems from the fact that she believes that her school is shining.
“I am very happy because this happened during my tenure as the administrator of the school. The day I heard the news, I was the happiest person. I am glad that my school has come to shine and will be recognized not only in Ikorodu but in Lagos for coming out as best in the mPulse spelling bee competition.”
Akinyele emerged champion of the 2021 MTN mPulse spelling bee competition out of over 13,000 participants all over the country winning himself a N2 million scholarship grant, a laptop, a smartphone, mPulse goody bag, and Nestle products. He also won for his English teacher, Mrs Anene Oluebube a cash prize of N350,000 along with a brand new laptop. Kaydel Group of Schools also received10 laptops alongside 10 Hynet modems courtesy of MTN.