Why I delved into ministry despite busy media schedules – Bolarinwa

Newly ordained deacon Akinlunle Bolarinwa seems to have been touched by words of God.
The veteran journalist might soon be starting his own Ministry judging by his new found love with the Holy Bible.
Akin, the man popularly known as Super Reporter dissected his journey in life, Journalism and call to serve God.

How did your journey in life started?

After my secondary education I had issues with my WAEC so I had to leave Lagos for Ibadan to try my hands on HSC while at the same time hoping for a better result in GCE. Ibadan Grammar School was the place and I lived close to the school at Molete .
My father’s younger brother (my uncle) who was the former DG MBC visited and took me to Liberty stadium for Shooting stars game and after the game I saw newsmen around the Press Gallery. Then I told my uncle I want to be like them because they had so much freedom. 
The passion started at that point in the 80’s, reading books like My command, Why we struck and January 1966 coup. These are very inspiring and Pan African literatures.
It is very important note, that I came from the generation of broadcasters, my grandfather was a teacher, a writer, a reporter and retired police commissioner. 
After the World Cup in 1998, I left my job as an office assistant to the Plant Engineer of the Nigeria Bottling Company to try out with a local news paper but just less than a year into the job I was employed as a Teller in a bank and so journalism was put on hold briefly. Remarkably after 2 years in the banking sector I had no choice than to return to my 1st love which is journalism.

As a veteran Journalist who worked for many organisations. Tell us the most memorable of all?

I started off with Surulere Community Newspaper in 1988, I was with Football Plus Magazine and many local newspapers before venturing into Radio broadcasting as a freelance reporter at Metro FM.
Unilag Radio and Noun FM gave me the balance but my best experience on the job was with Brila FM, they are very professional and very rewarding. 
Before accepting the offer to work with Brila FM, I had earlier rejected the opportunity to work with NBC which is a civil service job and pensionable.
Brila FM gave me that unique experience that no other radio stations can offer and the remuneration was very enticing.
After Brila FM I joined ITV and later Love Fm but Brila remains the best.
At Brila FM, I had the opportunity to present and report my own program according to my style not minding my deficiencies but rather focusing on my ability to deliver the news the African way which is more entertaining to all.

If you weren’t what profession will you have chosen?

Like I said earlier, journalism is embedded in the family and making that choice was so easy without any objection or rejection. 
Talking about support, yes I have moral support from my family but the financial support was not that much because I had to battle my ways through school of Journalism and Radio school too. It was quite expensive and at a point I jettisoned my Nigeria Institute of Public Relations examination due to paucity of funds.
Remember I graduated in Mass Communication from Lagos State Polytechnic and you know that journalism is not only about your academic qualifications but also about your experience on and off the job.

You have travelled to more than five countries. Which of those countries give you fond memories?

Attending the 2018 World Cup in Russia was an eye opener, my 1st time in Europe and it was fun touring the beautiful city of St. Petersburg.
 If there is any opportunity again I will like to visit Russia once more and see great cities like Kaliningrad and the longest river in Europe (River Volgograd) however before visiting Europe I have been to other smaller countries in West Africa.
In 2018, I was also in Dubai, though a very small city but surely a tourist destination.
I visited five countries recently namely Tunisia, Lesotho, Niger, South Africa and Egypt.

The joy of everyman is to be married with children. Is Mr Akinkunle Bolarinwa married?
I have been married since year 2000 and this year will mark my 20th year in wedlock and we are blessed with 2 kids.
Though it wasn’t easy but tolerance and love kept us going, as you are aware I am married to a deep religious woman (Pépé) and she is from Republic of Benin just like my own mother, you see that I only followed the foot steps of my father and I hope my son would continue the trend of marrying from Republic of Benin. 

Let me quickly add that my grandfather married a woman from Niger Republic while he was posted to Maiduguri as police officer (my grandfather had 8 wives and 24 kids, my father being the 1st son and 1st child) my grandmother is from Abeokuta in Ogun state, same with my grandfather. I’m the 1st male grandchild of my family.

Despite being a veteran, there are certain people you have always looked up to. Who are those people that inspired you?
Late Earnest Okonkwo and Danlandi Bako, they started the revolution in radio and television broadcasting.
Late Yinka Craig was already my mentor because he had this relationship with my uncle Engineer Yomi Bolarinwa who was former Director General of NBC.
Yinka Craig can do anything from sports to core news and even entertainment. 
Chuka Momoh and Fabio Olanipekun and Akinloye Olabamji came later but in, all these people indirectly contributed a lot to my development.

You were recently ordained as a deacon. This was a surprise to many despite your tight schedule. Are you also into ministration?
Spiritual abilities comes from God, like I said earlier my wife is a “Mother in Israel” meaning she is a Minister of God in the church so she influenced my spiritual development. 
At first, it was difficult combining spiritual work with earthly duties but I have to make a choice in between to create a balance. 
The bible says “I must do the work my father sent me while it is day because night cometh when no man shall work”

I am more of a family man now, i have stopped all earthly vices that can impede on my spiritual growth.

Will you say the Anointing is from above?
Let me start by saying that, “the blessings and callings of God is without repentance”. This is according to the Holy Bible.
I was born a Muslim and became a Christian in 1996 so that is my calling. 
The anointing from above is my heritage as the servant of the Lord.

What is your advice to journalists?
Some are of the opinion that journalism is dead but to be honest it isn’t rather. It is the standard that is diminishing.

If we say journalism is dead then the world is no more a global village because globalisation starts with news dissemination. 
My honest advise to journalists is to do their jobs diligently. 
“See a man who is diligent in his job, he will not stand before ordinary men but Kings”.

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