Unassuming Indonesian man is dead ringer for US president Barack Obama
Barack Obama is one of the world’s most recognisable people – but if he ever needs a body-double, he can rely on Ilham Anas.
The 40-year-old Indonesian’s resemblance is so uncanny he is regularly stopped at airports by passing admirers who mistake him for the U.S. President.
His work as Obama’s doppelganger has seen him travel the world – including the US and China – build a home and support his family in Jakarta – where the real Obama spent time living as a kid.
Ilham told wowzeto.com (Please hyperlink bold text www.wowzeto.com): “If I am wearing a suit, many people mistake me for the real Obama.
“When I was in America, a grandmother got in the elevator with me and was so shocked to see ‘Barack Obama’ stood there she fainted.”
The unassuming father-of-two, who works as a photographer for a teen magazine, is regularly mobbed when out and about in Indonesia – thanks in part to his celebrity status as the fake U.S. leader.
Ever since Obamamania swept around the world in the run up to the President’s first election win, Ilham has been teased about his look.
He added: “Colleagues of mine decided to put a picture of me next to that of Barack’s and everyone mentioned how similar we look.
“When he was elected, a local newspaper ran the picture comparing the two of us and suddenly there was so much demand for me to appear on TV and in public.
“I never wished for this, I am naturally a very shy person but it is God’s blessing.
“It has given me money to buy a car, money towards my house.”
But Ilham, a devout Muslim living in the world’s most populous Muslim nation, does sometimes fear for his safety because of who he looks like.
He said: “I am very careful about the jobs I take. I refuse anything that I think may be controversial or look bad on the real Obama.”
Ilham says he has never met his doppelganger and idol, but insists he will make the most of the opportunity should it ever come his way.
Ilham told wowzeto.com: “I have never met him in person. When he came to Indonesia, I was in Los Angeles – pretending to be Barack Obama.
“I hope someday I can meet him. If I do, the first thing I will ask is whether I can have a photograph alongside him!”
With Obama midway through his second term as President, Ilham is now starting to prepare for life outside of the spotlight.
He added: “Since Obama became leader I have learned many things such as speaking in public and stand-up comedy thanks to my work playing him, so I hope there will still be a way for me to exist in the entertainment world afterwards.”