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Joshua Nana Kwame Ayira | Ghana | Opportunities Are Either Given or Seized

Founder of Oration World Service | Broadcast Journalist

News Anchor (TV/Radio) | Executive Speech Coach | Speaker | Writer

My name is Joshua Nana Kwame Ayira, and I am the founder of Oration World Service. I have a diverse range of skills, including being a broadcast journalist, writer, news producer/anchor, executive speech coach, and voice-over artist. However, above all else, I identify as a Christian and a dreamer.

As an only child, I grew up in Tema, where my mother raised me with strict care. She didn't allow me to have many friends as she feared I might fall in with the wrong crowd. Instead, she introduced me to a far better company - BOOKS. I read everything from childhood stories to other reading "materials" I found (don't blame me... you know who to lol). This life-altering decision by my mother, although imposing, was the seed that was sown throughout my elementary education. My command of the English language caught the admiration of teachers, who would occasionally ask me to read to their classes to spite those who couldn't read (hilarious, I know lol).

After completing my basic education at Solidarity International School (SIS), I gained admission to one of Ghana's best secondary schools, St. Peter's Boys Senior High School (PERSCO), where I studied literature, history, and geography as my elective subjects as a general arts student. Later, I proceeded to the University of Ghana to study psychology. But one may wonder, what triggered my interest in pursuing journalism and communication-related fields? BOOKS! It all started with the books. The power to be found between the pages of a book is formidable. As Margaret Fuller once said, "Today a reader, tomorrow a leader."

Starting with novels and progressing to hardcover books and journals, I learned a profound truth: everyone has a story to tell, but not everyone is willing to listen or able to tell those stories effectively. Napoleon Bonaparte once said, "Readers are the true world movers," and I couldn't agree more.

My talent for articulating the words in a story while reading was one thing, but my deep-textured baritone was another. Many people encouraged me to pursue a career in media, but it wasn't until I realized that I could use my voice to share the stories of others and effect change that I became truly passionate about it. I saw myself as part of a group of "Global Changers" and began my journey in 2010 by moving from one radio station to the next, relying solely on recommendations from others. Even though I was unable to showcase my talent on the campus-based radio network, Radio Universe, I continued to persevere by recording voice overs, hosting events, and writing articles without any compensation.

In 2014, I was given the opportunity to intern at The Multimedia Group (Joy FM), despite having no journalism background. I had modelled after some great media personalities and acquired skill sets from others from a distance. I spent hours watching TEDx speakers on YouTube, particularly Komla Dumor of the BBC’s TEDx Euston presentation on ‘Telling the African Story,' and Kojo Oppong Nkrumah’s TEDx presentation on ‘Why I Believe in Africa.' These presentations stirred up my interest to immerse myself in the field. After my national service at the West African Gas Pipeline Company Ltd. (WAPCo) in 2016, I decided to pursue my dream. My boss at WAPCo, Mrs Nuna Senaya Esq., offered to pay for my broadcasting training to help me achieve my goal. I was fortunate enough to be trained personally by Tommy Annan Forson, a multiple award-winning veteran broadcaster. Later, I returned to Joy FM, where it all started, and was given the opportunity to understudy and be "groomed" by some of the finest personalities in the media space. This acted as a catalyst for my journey, which led me to GHOne TV (EIB Network) in 2017, where I currently work as a news producer, anchor, and reporter for both TV and radio (Starr 103.5FM).

What were the biggest initial hurdles and how did you overcome them?

Initially, my mother was my biggest hurdle. She fiercely opposed my career choice, citing potential risks and harm. However, I remained committed to my dream and eventually won her over with my persistence and dedication. Today, she is my biggest supporter and critic. My next hurdle was dealing with predators in the industry. During my brief stint at Joy FM, I felt like a bait in a shark tank, as some people viewed me as a competitor or even a rival. They were cold and unreceptive towards me, disregarding any contributions I made. However, with the encouragement of the late GM for Joy cluster, Elvis Koku Kwashie, I persevered. In 2017, I felt the urge to move on, not to quit, but to overcome challenges and advance my career. Despite the obstacles, I enjoyed my time at Joy FM.

What books are you currently reading?

My love for books knows no bounds as I’m currently reading these books.

- Say It Like Obama by Shell Leanne

- A Nation in Crisis; The Meltdown of Money, Government and Religion by Larry Bates and Chuck Bates

- Fighting Corruption Is Dangerous by Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

- Sleep Well My Beautiful Lady by Kwei Quartey

What advice would you give to an upcoming youth or talents locally and internationally?

My advice would be to never rely solely on opportunities being granted or given to you. Instead, prepare ahead and seize opportunities when they come your way. Just because someone else was given an opportunity doesn't mean you will be given the same. You may need to create your own opportunities and take action to achieve your goals. It's also important to remember that the best version of yourself is not the "I can do all things" version, but rather the disciplined version. And when learning from others, avoid competing with them and focus on collaboration and growth.

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(Joshua Ayira)







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