by Kolapo Olapoju
19-year-old First Officer, Daniel Adeyelika is the youngest certified pilot in Nigeria and he flies the Boeing 737, 600 series to 900 series.
Adeyelika, who was born in England, had his pilot training at Delta flight school, Dallas, Texas where he was the youngest in his class but still managed to come top of the class at the end of the 9-month duration.
He said, “I did my flight training in Texas, Dallas with Delta Flight School for nine (9) months. I knew I went there for a reason and not to play, I needed all the concentration, I go to school from Monday to Sunday. My Private Pilot License (PPL) was for one and a half month and my International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) was for three years.”
Daniel says he was never subjected to taunts and teases by his much-older classmates in flight school, but his age once proved to be an encumbrance when he was told to wait till he turned 18 before he could take a certain exam.
However, he says he faced a major challenge when he was sent to Amsterdam for his type rating.
“The challenge basically was when I was sent to Amsterdam for my Type Rating, it was really the toughest period I cant lie to you because it was not an easy task. I actually thought I was going to fail because I was the weakest in the class at the beginning but I came top of the class at the end. I kept telling my self “I can do it.” God really saw me through. The exercise lasted for one month.”