Pakistan 11 Years Old Motivational Speaker
Stylish costume, wireless microphone, and gesture worked Hammad Safi discusses in front of an audience as silent as conquered: in Pakistan, the “little teacher”, inducted motivational coach, has not yet blown his twelve candles but is already a star on the Internet.
“Use Google and YouTube to gain knowledge – for their positive side, not for watching movies!”, He tells a few hundred students at a private school in Peshawar, North West. University of spoken English, where he trains himself in the midst of teenagers and young adults.
During his advocacy pro-new technologies, Hammad Safi, a little man with an engaging smile and neat hair, charm for a quarter of an hour his elders, hanging on his lips. “Look at Barack Obama’s speeches, the more you listen to them, the better you’ll talk,” he advises.
“He is very intelligent and when he speaks, I am impressed,” enthuses Khan, a political science student twice his age who came to listen to him. “I’d like to be like him.”
“People love him because he’s just talking, he’s a hit every time,” says Samiullah Waqil, one of his former English teachers.
Phenomenon on the web, one of his videos in the Urdu language where he is seen giving a lecture at the University of Peshawar has been seen more than 2.6 million times. This motivation coach 2.0, which has its own YouTube channel and has 145,000 subscribers, captivates its audience, made up of students in journalism and communication.
The strings used are sometimes old: “Every second is a challenge. Failure is the basis of success,” he says.
But Hammad Safi also makes a strong impression when he refers to Allama Iqbal, a recognized poet and one of Pakistan’s founding fathers. “If he had not been there, I or anyone else would surely be cleaning the toilet in the house of an Englishman,” he said in reference to the long British colonial period. which preceded the creation of the country.
Online comments compete with praise. “Age does not define maturity, look at this miracle,” writes a user. “My little brother, I’m happy to know that the future of Pakistan depends on people like you,” says another, from neighboring India.
At the University of English, where is taught the language of Shakespeare, which generally only master the educated elites and middle classes of Pakistan, the supervisors see the “nanha professor” (little teacher) as a “diamond” to polish , who later “will run the country”.
Noted for his “phenomenal self-confidence” when he was just an English student among others, this son of a wealthy businessman from Peshawar left the classical school system to forge his qualities at Usecs explains the director of this university, Ammer Sohail.
He receives special treatment and every week he is perfect as a speaker in front of other students, especially boys.
His “job”, says Sohail, is to “encourage” the poorer students, “to give them hope, so that they break their glass ceiling”, in a Pakistan with glaring school inequalities, where more than 40% of the population is illiterate, according to 2014 UN data.
“Hammad works for people who have gone astray, for those who have not found meaning in their lives,” says he, emphatic. “We want it to spread this education awareness to the whole country.”
His father, Abdul Rehman Khan, is in unison. “My son is not an ordinary child,” he says. “He received a gift from God.”
“Lack of intellectual depth”
When questioned, the “little teacher” repeats these words, sometimes giving the impression of not understanding their scope. “I am an inspiration, not only for Pakistan but for the world, I inspire the entire universe,” he says, without blinking, to AFP.
The child sometimes studies “ten to twelve hours in a row,” according to his mentors. In his austere room, photos showing him in the company of the Chinese ambassador in Islamabad and the politician Imran Khan overhang his little bed in one place.
Posters of cartoon heroes or sportsmen are absent, rare toys. “Batman and Superman are fake heroes, but those are true,” he says, pointing to the portraits of Allama Iqbal, Bill Gates and Albert Einstein adorning his walls.
“Where’s the child in him?” He’s gone, worries Bakht Zaman, a professor at Peshawar University, who attended his lecture. “This talented child is a good motivational coach” but “he lacks intellectual depth,” he notes. “He can become what they want to do with him, but it will take time.”
Hassan Amir Shah, the vice chancellor of the public university of Lahore, where Hammad Safi also gave a lecture, hopes for his part that this hyper-solicitation “will not drive him crazy”.
“He still has a long way to go, many books to read,” he told AFP. “We can only judge him in twenty years, when he is an adult.”