Jamiu Abiola was born on the 5th of December, 1975 in Lagos, Nigeria. His primary education was at the University Of Lagos Staff School, he then attended King College, Lagos and Kent School, Connecticut for his High School. Jamiu attended New York University with a Major in Political Science and Minor in French and Arabic.
After returning to Nigeria, Jamiu ventured into the world of downstream petroleum business, an area that he is still currently active in as a petroleum dealer.
MY LINGUISTIC JOURNEY
Jamiu participated in a summer program at the age of 9, and was surrounded by children his age but mostly of Middle Eastern and North African origin. That was the first time he was put in the awkward position of being with people that were fond of speaking Arabic, a language that he did not understand at all.
After spending a whole month in the UK, Jamiu returned home to Nigeria at the end of his summer holidays with a pledge to learn Arabic before his next summer holiday. This quest lead Jamiu to buying many books with the help of his teacher, Ustaz Fatai. Determined to actualise his ambition, he started a regimented study pattern, sometimes till very late at night. Jamiu had successfully mastered the Arabic language by the following year, a couple of months before his 10th birthday.
Following that feat, Hausa was to follow by the time he was 12, with the help of his mother, Mrs Kudirat Abiola. Then French became his next obsession at the age of 14, he mastered it in 7 months through a program known as Vocabulearn, along with some classes.
There was a longer interval before he decided to learn another language, over three years passed. However, the polyglot in him could not be separated from his passion, as he moved to New York to study Political Science, he could not resist the temptation to learn Spanish as a result of the large Hispanic population in New York. Jamiu learnt Spanish in three months through a program known as the Living Language, using newspapers and dictionaries as well - just as he did with Arabic and French.
By 1995, he went to France to improve his French and that was where he met an Italian by the name of Alesandro, who encouraged him to learn Italian, claiming it would be easy for Jamiu because he already spoke Spanish, a similar language- Jamiu took his advice and learnt Italian, remarkably within just 2 months.
As he gained more confidence and skills, he went on to learn German, through the Living Language, in four months then decided to learn Japanese, also through the same means, which took him 9 months.
After returning to Nigeria from the US, Jamiu got married in 1999, then he learnt Kanuri and Shuwa, the two predominant languages of Borno, Nigeria, the area where his wife comes from.
Following his newly attained marital bliss, Jamiu decided to use the next eight years to re-visit all the languages that he had previously learnt, and read numerous books in each of these languages till perfection.
Jamiu wrote his first book 'Realistic Hopes' in Arabic before translating it to English, and has decided to be writing all his books in Arabic as a sign of appreciation to the Arabic Language for opening his eyes and heart to the beauty of Language and Literature.
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