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OGEFASH BLOG INTERVIEW WITH KEARIAM- THE WINNER OF THE FIRST EDITION OF MALTAVATOR CHALLENGE#MALTAGUINNESS

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Keariam Abera’s victory is what you can refer to as miraculous. If you recall, Keariam was evicted in the first round of the show and was voted in back by the Ethiopian team of ten. Out of the five Ethiopians that were evicted in the first round, he was chosen to join the queue for those envisaging to win the 20, 000 dollars. He came back into the competition more determined, stronger and better. What a good selection the team made as it eventually paid off; Keariam was announced the winner of the first edition of the maltavator challenge.

In this interview, he tells us how he was able to conquer others, relate with other countries despite the differences in language, culture, belief, character and his favourite country in the first edition of Malta Guinness “Maltavator Challenge” TV game show. Excerpts here

PROFILE

Born 27 years ago in the month of July, Ethiopian Keariam Abera Michael is a Business administration and management graduate at the Unity University, Ethiopia. His friends love to call him Karizu. He is handsome, athletic, swift, gentle, well behaved, outspoken and charming. His good looks can be attributed to his amicable and sociable character. He loves playing basketball, taking photographs, hiking and watching movies. Beyond his looks and physique, Keariam is clear sighted and bright as a button. His childhood was as fun as any other kid lucky enough to have everything.

PARTICIPATION IN THE MALTA GUINNESS MALTAVATOR CHALLENGE TV GAME SHOW

My participation started out as a simple one . A friend of mine told me about the competition. He said I should give it a try that I would make the cut. He also said it is an avenue for me to visit Nigeria for the first time and see how the country is. I have always looked forward to participating in competitions like this but never did until my friend encouraged me to take part in this. And since it’s abroad, I felt it would be a great experience to travel. I eventually did. I guess I got both.

ABOUT THE MALTAVATOR CHALLENGE

The games in the Maltavator Challenge were great. The whole place is beautiful , the people were great, the crew was outstanding on their job.

I met a lot of people and I had a lot of fun.

MOST MEMORABLE EXPERIENCE

The night when our neighbours, the Ghanians made us (The Ethiopians) dinner and we ate together . We ate from the pot with spoons and forks. While feasting, Toyosi from Nigeria came in and we all started arguing about whose jollof was sweeter-Ganaian jollof or Nigerian jollof. The next day, team Nigeria made us dinner, in cooperation with our Ethiopian ladies . We stayed a while for the night, had some sing along music; it was indeed fun.

Another memorable moment would be when me and Rajen from Ethiopia also sneaked off the competition to get some A/C in the bathroom-lol

DID YOU MAKE FRIENDS

Yes of course I did make friends and learnt from all of them. I learnt from the Ethiopians that I didn’t know before the competition. Also, from the the Ghanians like Daniel, Prince, Marshall, Simon and Oliver . Basically, I learnt from most of the guys in the Nigeria and Ghana team. Also, some of the girls from Nigeria team like Chizy and Love . Also, from the crew of Malta Guinness Maltavator Challenge TV game show- Emmanuel, Adebare, the entire filming crew Of AVF. Basically, most of the people in the competition.

MOST SOCIABLE COUNTRY

I think the Ghanians were everyone’s favorite, because they were talking and chatting with everyone. They kept pushing each other as a team and even other country’s teams. They were just the coolest and very great at fixing back problems because Daniel fixed mine.

Again, we clicked with the Ghanians first , they were our neibhours and truthfully they were very cool. They were also big and fit, so that was impressive to see. Then the Nigerians , and lastly the Ivorians . There was a language barrier but that didn’t keep us from being friends. Also, we all had fun at the swimming pool.

LIVING TOGETHER WITH OTHER ETHIOPIANS YOU JUST MET

Of course , we were living and eating together. Our room actually had 3 girls in addition to me and Dagnachew, but all the other guys usually come to our place, so we were all together most of the time.

CHALLENGES FACED

Truthfully there were times I doubted myself , I mean, I didn’t make the top 5 but my team mates voted me in, God bless them all. And even moving on, I had my drawbacks but God gave me strength and pushed me through. I’d say it’s an honor and a pleasure to have participated in the ‘Maltavator Challenge’ let alone win.

Also, the weather issue , we’re not used to temperatures rising to 33 and above.

Another challenge was in the rope game “Malta moves” where we had to jump from one rope to another. The ropes were slippery and my fingers got caught in the middle.

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HOW DO YOU FEEL AS A WINNER

It feels great to win. From all those people I managed to become the victor,it’s something only God can do.

WHAT MADE YOU WIN

I would say God , I asked for strength and drive and he gave me that.

YOU WON, WHAT DO YOU HAVE THAT OTHERS DON’T HAVE

I honestly don’t think I have something they don’t have. Physically, I’m smaller than most of them ; they are more fit than I am. But some of the competitions came out to be to my advantage I guess . At the end of the day, I believe God did this for me because it was part of his plan.

YOU WERE VOTED BACK BY THE TEAM. WOULD YOU CALL IT FATE OR LUCK. WHY DID THEY VOTE YOU

I would call it both luck and fate, and if I had to pick one I’d call it fate. When I knew I was in the bottom , I kept praying to God to save me because he knows how bad I wanted to remain in the competition and also win the competition. Even if I didn’t know how to, I just knew God will take care of that part. All I had to do was just ask for it. Other people got voted too, but I guess they had more faith in me, may be because they knew that I had more to give or may be because of how friendly I was with everyone . I am greatful to them for keeping me in the game especially those who gave up their own votes to keep me going in the competition as some of them were in the same bottom spot as I was.

WHAT WAS RUNNING THROUGH YOUR MIND AT THE LAST STAGE? WERE YOU SCARED?

Yes , I actually was . Because on the last lap, my go-cart got hit and the engine stopped running . That moment, what was going through my mind was, what if the others catch up with me, will they take into consideration that the engine stopped running. And after that , I didn’t know if it was the last lap or if I had made my final lap since I wasn’t counting laps but concentrating on the corners. Despite being unsure, I made my final stop at the pit , which would have cost me dearly if I hadn’t finished my laps.

WAS THE MALTA GUINNESS MALTAVATOR CHALLENGE TV GAME SHOW A FAIR GAME

Yes ,I think it was a fair game. Because the competition was balanced. If it was all about strength, Ghana would have taken it. But it wasn’t just about one trait.

FIRST TIME IN NIGERIA AND THE EXPERIENCE

Yes it was, truthfully we didn’t see much of Nigeria as much as we wanted to since the time phrase was short. But I would say it was fun, especially the time we went to the Femi Kuti Shrine.

ROLE MODELS

Starting from my family, there are a lot of people that I admire their dedication and hard-work. My mom is the most patient person I know. She is dedicated to anything she does. She is kind, caring and has the utmost faith in God, even in difficult times. I believe it’s her prayers that have got me here in life.

My uncles and aunts who are the most hard-working and truly decent people I know. And Kobe Bryant, the Mamba himself. His dedication and perseverance is something to follow.

WHAT MAJOR THING DID YOU LEARN IN THE MALTAVATOR CHALLENGE TV GAME SHOW AND TOOK BACK TO ETHIOPIA

Even though we are people with different cultures and languages, we are basically the same. I have learnt how to be more friendly, how to take one’s cultures or tradition into mine. In truth, not everything from another person is easy to accept. For instance, we’re more quiet than the other 3 countries; they were louder and more active. But that’s just how we grew up and how they did, but it doesn’t mean we can’t find a compromise around it. So I’d say compromise was what I learned.

NEXT STEP

Next step is the future. With God, I have some plans. As he helped me in the Malta Guinness Maltavator Challenge, he’ll help me in any challenge of life .

PRIZE MONEY

I promised God I’d give back to him even before I won, so I’ll do that and use the rest to invest in my future .

Also, I currently got accepted to grad school. I am on a tight deadline to make payment. I haven’t got the money yet . But let’s hope I’ll make it by the time of the deadline.

RELATIONSHIP STATUS

Not in any relationship

HOW DO YOU LOVE YOUR WOMEN

Now, that’s a funny question, seems like I’m ordering some sort of ice cream.

Well, I like them just right.Just a decent, easygoing person, down to earth in the ways that matter; no too much drama .

FINAL WORDS TO MALTA GUNNESS FOR ORGANISING THE SHOW

I would say thank you very much for the opportunity of a life time. These moments are unforgettable for me and it’s all because of Malta Guinness. I hope they will keep doing this so others could know what I mean. Getting people together is one thing but getting them involved with one another is another, and they accomplished both. I have drank enough malta to last me a few months.

Whenever it gets hot and I see a cold bottle of Malta Guinness, it takes me back to those moments at the competition. Long live the Malta brand , I hope you have even better years ahead of you.

On a final note, it would be great if they produced the Herb edition in Ethiopia. It just has that right amount of sweetness.

PEOPLE SKEPTICAL ABOUT PARTICIPATING IN COMPETITIONS THINKING IT IS A SCAM

On the issue of scam, I’d say know what you’re getting into first, do some research. Don’t just enter into anything just because it’s there, and that’s not only for a competition, it’s for life in general. But for the competition, just try it. At the end of the day, we don’t regret the chances we took but those we didn’t; (assuming it’s the right type of chance; chance to rob a bank doesn’t qualify here). Go take a risk, get out of your comfort zone. I did and it paid off with God’s help.

WHAT PEOPLE DON’T KNOW ABOUT KEARIAM

I sometimes watch football/soccer . It’s a rare occasion , I secretly admire LeBron James but won’t let my friends know it, lol. And I have a hard time with time conversion.

WATCH THE INTERVIEW HERE

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