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New challenger emerges for the tallest man on Earth causing huge dispute

New challenger emerges for the tallest man on Earth causing huge dispute

There can only be one tallest man on the planet, but who is it?

A new challenger has laid a claim to the title of tallest man on Earth, sparking a huge dispute. It's absolutely massive and the stakes could not be higher. Honestly, news does not get bigger than this... You get the idea.

The current Guinness World Record holder is Sultan Kosen, from Turkey, who stands at 251 centimetres, or 8ft 2.8.

However, the BBC got wind of a chap in Ghana who was apparently even taller, so they went to verify the claim once and for all.

Sulemana Abdul Samed - better known by his nickname 'Awuche' - was told during a recent checkup that he had grown to 9 ft 6in (2.89m), though the measurement was dubious at best.

The tallest man on Earth?

The 29-year-old was diagnosed with gigantism a few years back, and in his appointment to address the various complications that come with the condition, he was asked to stand against a measuring rod.

The nurse was stunned to find he had outgrown it, and soon a crowd of colleagues had gathered around to help figure out how best to determine his height, eventually opting to use a pole as an extension above the scale.

Keen to validate this estimate, the BBC visited Awuche armed with a 16ft tape measure - though finding a building tall enough for him to stand against proved an issue.

Once they found one, Awuche took off his shoes - fashioned from tyres and nails by a local handyman, due to a lack of shoes in his size - and stood with his back to the wall, while his neighbour stood on a stool and marked his height with a piece of charcoal.

It confirmed that Awuche is... 7ft 4ins.

He's not the tallest man on Earth... yet.

So it's actually pretty impressive that nurses managed to land more than two feet off the mark with their improvised pole measure estimate.

But while he may not be the tallest man in the world at the moment, he thinks he could still break the record yet.

"I'm still growing tall. Who knows, maybe one day I may get to that height too," he said.

"Every three months of four months I grow… If you've not seen me for three months or four and you see me, you'd realised I have increased."

Awuche has Marfan syndrome, a genetic disorder affecting the body's connective tissues, which has left him with an abnormally curved spine.

It results in long limbs and can also cause heart defects.

Doctors say he needs a surgical procedure in his brain to stop the growth, but Ghana's public healthcare system won't cover it.

Kosen remains the tallest.
REUTERS / Alamy Stock Photo

Awuche's priority is to try and raise money for plastic surgery to deal with a serious skin complaint on one leg, ankle and foot caused by the excess growth of the limb.

But despite his health problems, he remains positive in his outlook.

"That is how Allah chose it for me, I am OK," he said. "I don't have a problem with the way God created me."

Featured Image Credit: Nathan King / Alamy BBC

Topics: World News, Guinness World Record