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How World Boxing Heavyweight Champion Anthony Joshua Learnt Discipline at a Nigerian Boarding School



Anthony Joshua. Photo Credit: Twitter – @anthonyfjoshua

If you attended boarding school in Nigeria, you should be able to relate to this.

World Boxing Heavyweight champion, whose full name is Anthony Oluwafemi Olaseni Joshua, in a recent interview revealed how he learnt discipline at a Nigerian boarding school.

Joshua was born to a Nigerian woman, Yeta, and an Irish-Nigerian father, Robert.

At age 11, Joshua joined his mother in Nigeria for six months and attended a school he expected to remain in, DailyMail reports.

“I thought I was going there (Nigeria) on holiday. I wasn’t prepared for it. It was a boarding school as well.

At the time you think ‘Why?’, but as you get older you think it was good that you experienced it. It was good for me.

I think my mum was trying to do some business there; maybe she had it in her mind. You don’t just randomly decide to move there. She might have been thinking about it, but didn’t inform us because we were kids. We stayed out there, not long, only six months.

It was a change and I thought I was going to go for the full course: 5.30am in the morning, up fetch your water, put like an iron in your water to warm it up. Your clothes had to be washed and ironed.

It wasn’t an issue but I wasn’t prepared. It was a good discipline.

We got beaten. That’s my culture: beating. The government raise your kids now; parents aren’t allowed to raise their kids, because there is so much control about what you do or what you say. In the (Nigerian) culture it’s family, outside support; everyone has a role in raising the kids.

I thought I was in heaven (when I returned to England).

(But) when you are in sport you become a representation of people. I’ve got it (an outline of Nigeria) tattooed on my arm, so people can relate to me.

I don’t know if (a fight there) will happen,” he said.

Photo Credit: Twitter – @anthonyfjoshua


  1. babym

    May 2, 2017 at 10:12 am

    buhahahaha is it ring boiler he is referring to as iron in the water buhahahaha my bele o. this oyibo ppl sef lool

  2. Bad gang

    May 2, 2017 at 10:25 am

    Na boiling ring this one dey call iron…lol… oyibo kpo!

  3. Adeleke

    May 2, 2017 at 10:30 am

    Success get many parents sha, When he was doing bad, una claim am???

  4. N

    May 2, 2017 at 10:32 am

    Despite the iron thing, he’s right though. Nigerian boarding school is crazy and I admire his love for Nigeria

    • sugar

      May 2, 2017 at 11:31 am

      The toughest boarding school in Nigeria are Especially Federal Government Schools (FGGC). Am glad he didnt mention the school because i forsee some old students will claim to be his classmates, hostel mate, dinning hall partner, teachers too will say he was intelligent in class.

    • Chizzy

      May 2, 2017 at 10:31 pm

      Surviving in FGGC Owerri is still one achievement I am super proud of. From pounding toilets to soaking indomie over night.

  5. Naijababeii

    May 2, 2017 at 10:34 am

    for where? nobody remember d guy na when him win everyone the associate with am ok naija people i hail una

    • Anon

      May 2, 2017 at 11:32 am

      Quite a few newspapers and blogs wrote about him when he won the gold medal at the London Olympics in 2012. He’s moved on to greater things and with success, there are many parents.

    • ?

      May 2, 2017 at 1:43 pm

      Tomato, tomato

  6. blackbeatle

    May 2, 2017 at 10:49 am

    so the estate council he lived in treated him better than our boarding school.???.if its same estate in uk i know of …i doubt o..except he wants to make his story exotic

    • Asa

      May 2, 2017 at 11:03 am

      Me I don’t know the estate council he lived in o. But nightmare is another name for a Nigerian boarding school. In fact from listening to him, e be like say im go one of the posh schools o. In my own, FGGC Onitsha, we climbed over 300 steps up and down a hill to fetch water. We fetched our bathing water a day before because no one could fetch water that same morning – it was just not possible. Our toilets were full and our toilet workers were called pounders. When it was my turn to be a toiler worker, we turned to sccopers. We had to scoop out the shit after people had shitted. i kept wondering why we didn’t just shit in the bush straight up. Why did we shit in toilets so that other people could scoop it out later and pour it in the bushes?

      Boiling ring for water? That was not for junior students o. That was strictly for SS 3 students. On very cold harmattan mornings we sometimes didn’t have a bath till afternoon when the weather was warmer.

      Beating was accepted at school. From flogging with hanger to palming on the back. Everything was accepted.

      All these were facts of my life and I am not even trying to make my story exotic.

    • TSW

      May 2, 2017 at 12:13 pm

      Lmbo FGGC Onitsha ’01 set here…and this is 110% correct! ?

    • Nuna

      May 2, 2017 at 2:13 pm

      LMFAOO I should know you. I left FGGC Onitsha in 03. ‘Nurse of so many young girls who are great achevers’

    • Toese

      May 2, 2017 at 9:45 pm

      lol…it is exotic dont worry…
      Ur gist brings up old memories..
      FEGICOLLA here.. ’96 set
      Those toilets were horrid mehn… not just shits….blocked with used sanitary towels …mehn… Diaris God…’short-put’ for life… Short-Put is the process of shiting and throwing it away… the further the better…

    • Anon

      May 2, 2017 at 11:44 am

      Did he specifically say “so the estate council he lived in treated him better than our boarding school?”

      This is what he said – “thought I was in heaven (when I returned to England).”

      Why twist his words and add .except he wants to make his story exotic.?

      For the sake of an argument, you think all council estates are the same? You think the ones in Garston are as crowded and run down as the ones in Peckham, Elephant and Castle, Harlesden et al?

  7. Nikky

    May 2, 2017 at 10:50 am

    Very honest interview. I went to a boarding school in nigeria and hated every minute of it SPENT 6 years and swore no daughter of mine is going to a boarding school. It was tough mehnn

  8. Deleke

    May 2, 2017 at 11:42 am

    FGC schools should be classified as Max prisons, the hard labour, crappy food, wicked seniors and general state of play makes it as bad, Orange is the new black resonates that in my mind.

    • Mannie

      May 2, 2017 at 12:10 pm

      Orange is the new black is a holiday resort in comparison with some FGGC colleges in Nigeria. To me, Nigerian boarding schools lie somewhere in between Shawshank redemption and Oz.

    • Chizzy

      May 2, 2017 at 10:34 pm

      I agree with you though my school cooked above average meals

  9. Iyun

    May 2, 2017 at 12:53 pm

    Learnt he attended Mayflower, Ikenna. I’m glad he’s doing well and making himself, his family and us proud: yes I said US because no matter how small he is still a Nigerian.

  10. Oluwakemi Adeoye

    May 2, 2017 at 12:59 pm

    These boarding school stories just brought memories, pounding shit in toilet one of Pink Hostel in Model college igbogbo. Gawd thinking that experience was the worse, wicked seniors as well, jeez the seniors were fromHell. Irony the most wicked ones had beautiful names and were infact beautiful. The worst part, if you were an ugly duckling in my school …that is the end, Been an ugly duckling in secondary didn’t help my matter. God did this….we are here looking back and laughing about it

    • sandy

      May 2, 2017 at 4:45 pm

      If you were rich, you could get way with being ugly.!!!!

  11. mz_danielz

    May 2, 2017 at 1:09 pm

    Please he is a Nigerian oh and we will shamelessly famz abeg.

    After all, if he had committed a crime abroad, they will be quick to say ‘Nigerian Oluwafemi Olaseni, involved in a gang shoot out or whatever’ but now that he’s a success, he is british faa.

    Nwannem nwoke , congratulations * even though we are shamelessly famzing, Nigeria needs all the good news we can get right now’.


    May 2, 2017 at 1:11 pm

    I dont think FGGC had anything on Commands, NMS, Airforce etc. But the stories from the FGGC schools are killing! Can you just imagined if you had attended AHall and the other private or butter schools? Dont think i would have it any other way sha!

    • Nuna

      May 2, 2017 at 2:16 pm

      I dont consider those ones boarding schools. I consider them 5 star hotels. I attended an FGGC and though it was hard, I dont regret it one bit.

  13. Anon

    May 2, 2017 at 2:45 pm

    Why is my second comment “Comment awaiting moderation?”

  14. Debby

    May 2, 2017 at 3:45 pm

    I only have eyes on his picture… He is BEAUTIFUL!?

  15. Bowl

    May 2, 2017 at 5:09 pm

    Boarding school experience was one of my best growing up. Cleaning toilets was one chore I particularly liked. This was because I kept the toilet keys. Anybody wanting to use the toilets would have to show me their water. And , if you mess up the toilet, then you clean it up. So many times I literally had nothing to do because the toilets we’re kept aseptically clean by these rules.

    • Chizzy

      May 2, 2017 at 10:35 pm

      I was about asking the name of the school

  16. Bowl

    May 2, 2017 at 5:10 pm

    I went to a Catholic school by the way

  17. Oluchi Nweke

    May 3, 2017 at 5:46 am

    I went to Command Kaduna. The story plenty, is it Arlege, the punishments but they are molded me to my present state so will not mind if my kids attend too. But Lord, when I remember everything o boy it was ten much.

  18. tunmi

    May 4, 2017 at 6:34 pm

    It sounds like abuse

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