Nigeria’s Tani, 8-year-old Homeless Chess Champion, Gets New Apartment

*Tanitoluwa Adewumi in his family’s new apartment. Credit: Christopher Lee for The New York Times

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By Joshua Olomu

Tanitoluwa Adewunmi, eight year-old Nigerian chess champion and his family have moved into a new apartment, courtesy of goodwill donations after his success story went viral.

According to New York Times, the young Tani,who recently won the New York State Chess championship for his age bracket, got a GoFundMe drive which raised more than 200,000 dollars for him, his parents and brother.

“The family settled on one of the more modest and practical housing offers: An anonymous donor paid a year’s rent on a two-bedroom apartment near Tani’s current school.

“The apartment is clean, comfortable and freshly painted, without being luxurious, and the Adewumi’s gaze adoringly at their new kitchen.

“I want my mom’s cooking again!” Tani mused as he explored the apartment. It was bare, but another donor had offered furniture, sheets and towels. Someone else was sending 100 chess books.”

It added that three film companies are vying to make movies about Tani.

The young chess champion, whose family are taking asylum in a homeless shelter in Manhattan after they fled the Boko Haram insurgency, won seven chess trophies, including the state tournament, where he outwitted other children.

Adewunmi, went undefeated at the state tournament, outwitting children from elite private schools with private chess tutors.

Tanitoluwa rating is now 1,587 and rising fast and he is being compared with the world’s best player, Magnus Carlsen, who stands at 2,845.

His feat has attracted commendations from parents and celebrities, with the story getting the the attention of former US president Bill Clinton, who invited the lad and his parents to his office.


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