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BREAKING: Nigerian Chef Hilda Baci Stirs Up a Record, Surpasses World’s Longest Cooking Marathon

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LAGOS, Nigeria — A new culinary milestone is being set in Nigeria as local chef Hilda Effiong Bassey, known widely as Hilda Baci, cooks her way into the record books.

Baci surpassed the current Guinness World Record holder for the “longest cooking marathon by an individual” on Monday, May 15, 2023 morning, after maintaining an uninterrupted cooking streak that lasted an impressive 87 hours and 50 minutes.

The Lagos-based restaurateur embarked on her record-breaking journey on Thursday, heating her stove at 4 p.m. By Monday, she had outlasted the previous record set by Indian chef Lata Tondon, who cooked nonstop for 87 hours and 45 minutes in 2019.

The marathon took place at Amore Gardens in Lekki, Lagos State, and is still in progress, as Baci shows no signs of hanging up her apron.

Nigerians, including a variety of celebrities, braved the rain to rally behind the seemingly tireless chef. Among the supporters were former Anambra State Governor and Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi, and Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.

Obi praised Baci’s tenacity on Twitter, writing, “The efforts being made by Hilda Effiong Bassey (Hilda Baci) to beat the current Guinness World Record for cooking for four days nonstop shows the true Nigerian spirit of hard work and resilience.”

Margaret Obi, the wife of the Labour Party presidential candidate and Akwa Ibom native, and Senator Godswill Akpabio, the former minister of Niger Delta and immediate past governor of Akwa Ibom, visited Hilda during the contest.

Sanwo-Olu surprised the crowd by turning up at Amore Gardens on Sunday afternoon to laud the culinary talent. He praised Baci for her representation of the “Lagos spirit,” further motivating the chef as she prepared to make global culinary history.

Baci is no stranger to culinary accolades. In 2021, she won the inaugural Jollof Face-off Competition, taking home a grand prize of $5000.

The Guinness Book of Records, first published in 1955, is a revered archive of human and natural world records. To be included, individuals or groups must submit proof of their achievements and undergo a thorough verification process.

If certified by Guinness World Records, Baci’s record-breaking feat will be an historic testament to her culinary endurance, and a source of national pride for Nigeria.

During the contest, Hilda Baci was also cheered on by Nigerian celebrities and entertainers.

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