Nigerian Man to Restart Attempt At Longest Marathon Reading Aloud

12 September 2023

Guinness World Records have been informed about the development, an official said.

A Nigerian man, John Obot, is to start all over again in his attempt to break the Guinness World Record for the longest marathon reading aloud after the exercise suffered some glitches, the organisers said on Tuesday.

Mr Obot, a teacher from Akwa Ibom State, had read aloud a variety of books for over 50 hours as of Monday night. He started on 9 September and had been expected to read for six days.

He is hoping to reach 145 hours to beat a previous record of 124 hours set in September 2022 by a Kyrgyzstan, Rysbai Isakov, in Bursa, Turkey.

"Regrettably, we experienced some equipment/power failure leading to technical issues, which are essential for recording and verifying this monumental event. In the interest of maintaining the highest level of integrity and ensuring that every participant's effort is accurately documented, we have made the difficult decision to start all over again," Udeme Nana, founder Uyo Book Club and the chief programme director for the exercise, said in a statement.

Mr Nana said Guinness World Records have been informed about the development and that they approved that the reading exercise "Readmania" be restarted Tuesday, 12 September, by 1p.m. at the same venue - a small hall in a hotel in Uyo.

Mr Obot's attempt at breaking the world record has received solidarity from several dignitaries, including First Lady of Akwa Ibom State Patience Eno, who had visited the hall, sat down and listened as he read from different books.

Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe; Civil War Child by Nestor Udoh; Ibibio Nation: History and Culture by Oto-Obong Uwah; Eze Goes to School by Michael Crowder and Onuora Nzekwu; and Animal Farm by George Orwell are among the books Mr Obot has read aloud so far.

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