By Tosin Ajirire
He is eclectic and adventurous. At just 24, he’s ready to dare and conquer. No wonder he emerged as the Ultimate Champion in the recently concluded Gulder Ultimate Search 9.
An avid reader and blogger, Edo State-born Paschal Ojezele Eronmose, who is currently a final year student of Applied Mathematics at University of Benin, here opens up on his winning strategy, experience in the jungle and plans for his new-found fortune. Excerpts:
Growing up was not always fun for me. I was always a mischievous person. Most of the problems I had as a child were caused by me. But somehow, I still keep my head straight. I love challenges and adventures. Every little thing is like an adventure for me. So, I take a challenge in its stride as it comes.
My strategy was to come to the jungle like an underdog, someone nobody would see as a threat, and yet at the end of the day, I would emerge from nowhere to clinch the prize. Obviously, it worked for me because nobody really saw me as a threat, yet I went home with the crown. Definitely I was aware that I was going to win because if I didn’t know, I wouldn’t have participated in the competition in the first place.
Going into finals with a woman
In a challenge as Gulder Ultimate Search 9, there is no room for complacency. When you start feeling the urgency dying down, that’s when you are not fit to forge ahead. I did not feel complacent at any point in time. But if I had lost to Onyinye, I would have mourned for a while. I would have felt bad that I lost to a girl but life goes on. I will take it in its stride just like every other adventure.
Relationship with Onyinye
I will say what happened in the jungle lives in the jungle. Yes, Onyinye was the first person to get to the point where the treasure was hidden before she later ran back. Well, that was a strategy I employed which I am not ready to disclose now. But honestly,
Onyinye would have won if I didn’t win. There is no doubt about it.
My thoughts when I discovered fortune
What first came to my mind was, ‘this is it’, the moment that will make the difference in my life. I guess I’m still living in my dreams.
How I’ll spend the money
I intend to invest wisely. But I cannot start to outline the process here. I assure you that I will not throw away all the prize money while partying and all that.
Going into showbiz
Definitely, with this platform they have given to me, it’s almost impossible for me to stay out of show business. I guess I will end up in showbiz.
Absolutely, nothing is going to change about me as a winner. I will still be me. For the challenges associated with the crown, I have already started handling that now. I love challenges and adventures. Of course, I will take them as they come.
I’m a Christian and I will definitely pay my tithe. But don’t ask me how much I’m going to pay because it is between me and my God.
I’m now 24, if the right woman comes my way, why not! What would I be waiting for? Marriage of course!
My saddest moment in the jungle was when I was left blindfolded because of the task we did beforehand. And I had to lead a team of blindfolded warriors tied together to amend the puzzle. But because of the situation we found ourselves coupled with a lot of miscellaneous factors, we could not finish the puzzle on time.
At that point in time, I felt I lost the game because I was leading the team. So, definitely, it wasn’t the team that lost but I. I thought I could have done better at that point in time to win the game. Well, I learnt my lessons from that experience.
Lessons from the jungle
For the 29 days I spent in the jungle, I learnt more than one new thing everyday. And from each of the individual contestant, I learnt something new from them. From Koffi Adams to Onyinye, I learnt a lot of new things. From Koffi, I learnt how to keep my privacy, and from Ayo, I learnt how to be careful. From Patience, I learnt how not to be over confident. I learnt to slow down and take my time especially when it comes to stuff that I really can do easily.