Chinonso Uba (Nonsonkwa), Biography, Early life, Career

Very few presenters in Nigeria’s broadcast media industry can still boast of passion for their job. The discouraging economic situation in the country, decaying value system and comparatively low remuneration in the media industry combine to make many presenters do their work just to earn salary. Every sector is affected by the high degree of corruption which distorts the value system in the society, even among media workers. This has seriously impeded the prevalence of quality journalists and broadcast programme presenters in the country. A few presenters in Nigeria still standout in the media landscape as brands that have refused to slaughter dedication to duty and passion for their work on the altar of quest for illicit offers from the elite in the society. These persons see their work as a calling and show unbelievable commitment to every second they spend in the studio as presenters. Among them is Theodore Chinonso Uba, popularly known by his studio name, Nonsonkwa. He is the most captivating On-Air Personality (OAP) in Imo State and one of the top broadcasters in the South East geopolitical zone of Nigeria.

Who is Chinonso Uba?

Theodore Chinonso Uba, better known by his fans as Nonsonkwa, is a musician, comedian, actor and OAP in Imo state. He hails from Umunoha in Mbaitoli LGA of Imo state, Nigeria. The multi-talented OAP is a household name in Imo and neighbouring states where listeners tune in to listen to his programmes on Ozisa 96.1 FM, Owerri.

Early life

Nonsokwa grew up in Enugu State where his parents resided until he moved on later in life to pursue his own dreams. He had always dreamt of being a priest or lawyer but destiny navigated him to a career he was born to pursue – broadcasting. His childhood experiences reflect a life that probably has a divine touch, as he would not have lived beyond the age of seven if not for what he says is the hand of God upon him.

While in Enugu State with his parents, Nonsonkwa suffered an illness that pushed him into a coma for three days and was almost buried alive before he woke up miraculously. He was diagnosed with spinal meningitis in 1986, while he was seven years old. This was a killer disease that eliminated children at that time and even now. He was rushed to Owelli General Hospital in Awgu LGA of Enugu State where his parents lived at the time but was referred to University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH) Enugu. Nonsonkwa was in coma for three nights and three days at UNTH. He had to undergo a surgery at the hospital but this did not help matters as a result of which his father requested that his body be released for burial. As the hospital was about to heed the request of his father, Nonsonkwa woke up from the coma. Just as the saying goes, the rest is history. Today, Nonsonkwa is one of the best hands in Nigeria’s broadcasting industry with captivating presentation techniques that have made him the delight of millions of listeners in the South Eastern region.

Career

Nonsonkwa is a personification of passion-driven career. For someone who wished he could become a priest but ended up in the studio and consistently puts up five-star performances that distinguish him in the industry, Nonsonkwa is truly a rare breed. This graduate of Imo State University began his journey into the broadcast world as a radio dramatist in 2009. He started working as a radio presenter in 2012 when an opportunity came up for him to work in Heartland 100.5 FM (Radio Nigeria) Owerri.

Nonsonkwa left Heartland FM for MyRadio 101.1FM before moving to Darling FM 107.3 Owerri. He then moved to Ozisa 96.1 FM Owerri in 2009 and that is where he works today. He is among the best hands in the station and his programmes have contributed in making Ozisa FM the most sought-after radio station in Imo state. Nonsonkwa uses listener-friendly presentation techniques to captivate his listeners and this has made him the most popular Igbo language programme presenter in the state. He presents the following programmes on Zisa FM – Akuko Siri (Na Akwukwo Akuko), Obodo bu Igwe, Ube Nwanne, and Gwam Eziokwu. These are programmes that have very huge fan base across every segment of the society. His combination of humour and engaging communication skills keeps listeners glued to his programmes till the last minute.

The Catholic Bishop of Owerri Diocese, Archbishop Obinna once suggested that Nonsonkwa could become the governor of Imo State if he contested for that position because of the love people had for him. “You would have run for Governor, People love You,” Archbishop Obinna told to Nonsonkwa in an event. Nonsonkwa actually tried his hand in politics as he contested for Imo State House of Assembly seat for Mbitoli State Constituency. He was not successful. After the election he went back to the studio and continued doing what he knew how best to do.

Nonsonkwa has also made appearances in the Nollywood industry with about 14 movies to his credit. He has also released some highlife music albums but his level of success in the music and movie industry cannot be compared to what he is achieving as a radio programme presenter.

Awards

Nonso is among the most decorated OAPs in the South East with numerous awards from various groups in recognition of his dedication to duty and for making many people happy and emotionally healthy through his programmes. He was honoured as the Best Igbo Broadcaster in Igboland in 2019 by Paragon World Foundation. He was also recognized as the Golden Ambassador on Radio in 2019 by Jehovah Jire Anglican Church, Trans Egbu, Imo State. He was honoured as the Pillar of the Youth also in 2019 by the Catholic Youth Organization, Owerri Archdiocese. His awards are numerous but Nonsonkwa seems not to be keen on receiving awards as he is simply expressing his passion on radio through his programmes.

Charity work

Nonsonkwa is among few OAPs in Nigeria who are interested in giving back to the society through philanthropic activities. He launched Project Help The Sick in October 2019. This is a charity organization aimed at helping the sick by attracting donations from philanthropists in the society. Nonsonkwa said he set up the organization as a way of thanking God for saving him from a killer disease as a child.

Finally!

Nonsonkwa is a household brand in Imo state and one of the most captivating OAPs in the South East. He is a source of inspiration and a model to many young people in the geopolitical zone who listen to his programme. His pedigree as a local language programme presenter is impressive. He has impacted the society through his programmes which always feature interesting topics and issues that are informative, entertaining and appealing to his huge fan base.

 

 

The Author

Chinenye Nwabueze

Nwabueze is a communication researcher with several years of lecturing experience in Nigerian universities.

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