The ANA 2017 Literary Prize Winners were announced by one of the judges, Dr. Owojecho Omoha of the University of Abuja at the ANA Convention awards dinner on Saturday 28th October, 2017 held at Royal Choice Inn, Makurdi, Benue State. Only three categories (Drama, Poetry and Prose) were awarded out of the six contestable ANA Literary Prizes. The judges did not find any work worthy enough to merit the ANA/Maria Ajima Prize for Literary Prizes, ANA/Abubakar Gimba Prize for Fiction (Short Stories Collection), and ANA Children’s Literature Prize (for ages 7-13 years). However, an ‘Honourary Mentions’ list (for commendable works not strong enough to merit the award but worth mentioning) were announced alongside the shortlist release in September 2017.

ANA Prize for Drama
Winner: Magnetism by R. C. Ofodile
1st Runner Up: The Masked Crown by Tunji Ajibade
2nd Runner Up: General Ologbosere by Dickson Ekhaguere

ANA Prize for Poetry
Winner: For Every Homeland by Obari Gomba
1st Runner Up: Of Waters and the Wild by Ebi Yeibo
2nd Runner Up: A Child of Smell by Seyi Adigun

ANA Prize for Prose Fiction
Joint Winners: Across the Gulf by Dul Johnson
What It Takes by Lola Akande
1st Runner Up: Devil’s Pawn by Kukogho Iruesiri Samson
2nd Runner Up: Goodbye Tomorrow by Ike Utuagha

The Honourary Mentions and their categories as announced in the list released in September are:
A Tiny Place Called Happiness by Bura-Bari Nwilo
Gates of Dawn by MSC Okolo
Tales From Our Past by Lucky James.

The Adventure of Three Wild Boys by Wale Adewale
Sodality: A Tale of Friendship by Chioma A Diru
Dancing Tree by Stanley Okeke Oji

• ‘Radical Theatre and Criticism of anti-People’s Culture: A Study of Esiaba Irobi’s Hangmen also Die’ by Nwagbo Pat -Obi
• ‘Vicarious Idiosyncrasies: The Mother-Daughter Ligament in Ernest Emenyonu’s Listen, My Momma Pays Your Taxes’ by Fynest Elvis


1. Prof. Nelson Fashina – University of Ibadan
2. Salihu Mohammed Bappa- Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria
3. Dr. Ismaila Bala Garba – Bayero University, Kano
4. Dr Owojecho Omoha- University of Abuja
5. Dame Joan Oji – Educational & Literary Consultant, Abuja


For a detailed review of the 2017 Literary Prizes Shortlist, check here.


Dul with Su'eddie
Dul Johnson (2017 ANA Prize for Prose winner) with his publisher, Su’eddie Vershima Agema (2014 ANA Prize for Poetry Winner)
Posted in AWARDS


The Judges of the Association of Nigerian Authors Literary Prizes are pleased to release the short list for the 2015 ANA Prizes. The names and titles are listed below in no particular order.



  1. Avenger of Blood       –              Franklin Finecountry

  2.   On the Bank of the River –     Ifeoluwapo Adeniyi

  3. Prodigals in Paradise–       Henry Akubuiro

   4. Odufa: A Lovers’ Tale – Othuke Ominiabohs


  1. Kosoko King of Eko – Fela Omoyele
  2. Sacking the Porter- OlatundeBolaji
  3. Fated Rift              – R.C. Ofodile


  1. Thunder Protocol             –  Obari Gomba
  2. Kontradiction                     -Saddiq Dzukogi
  3. The Birth of Illusion         -Jumoke Verissimo


  1. River People and Other Stories –  Peter Ukwa
  2. Midnight Cry                                  – Paul Ugah
  3. From Sin to Splendour-                – R. C. Ofodile

The ANA / Ngozi Chuma Udeh Prize  for Children’s Literature

  1. The Quest for the Gem of Arubia – Augusta Mmakamba Okon
  2. Sunny and the Arodan –               Ozimede Sunny Ekhaalume
  3. Water-Carrier Millionaire–               Philip Begho.


Not Awarded(reasons to be given later)


Not Awarded(reasons to be given later)


  1. “The Film Script, Nollywood and Cultural Diplomacy: Criticism of Artist’s Knowledge of the Film Story.” by Nwagbo Pat Obi (for Honorable Mention only)


1. Prof Nelson Fashina-University of Ibadan

2. Mallam Salihu Mohammed Bappa- Ahmadu Bello University Zaria

3. Ismaila Bala Garba-  Bayero University,Kano

4. Dr Owojecho Omoha- University of Abuja

5. Mrs Joan Oji- Educational Resource Centre, Abuja


#  Winners of the various prizes will be announced at the awards dinner of the 35th Anniversary International Convention of the Association coming on  Saturday the 29th   of  October,2016 in Abuja.


Signed: Olatunbosun Taofeek

               Publicity Secretary( South)

Gotten from the ANA Website Here.

Posted in AWARDS, PRIZES, Uncategorized

Karen Jennings, Kubuitsile, TJ Benson, Tochukwu Okafor, others make 2016 Short Story Day Africa Prize Long List (Announced)

The Short Story Day Africa Prize (worth R10,000) is one of Africa’s prominent short story awards. It is pan-African and is theme-based. The theme for this year’s competition was ‘Migrations’. The 2016 long list includes the talented and award winning writers, the South African Karen Jennings, the Botswanan Lauri Kubuistile, the Nigerians TJ Benson (in whom we are well pleased) and Tochukwu Okafor, among other cool writers.

According to the competition’s site,

the long list deliberations were difficult. There were several stories we struggled to let go. At one stage, there was talk of extending the anthology to include these stories, but in the end we figured we have to draw a line somewhere. Instead we gave these writers a special mention. It is our hope that their stories go on to find deserving homes in other publications.

The Migrations Long List

  1. Aba Asibon (Ghana)
  2. Anne Moraa (Kenya)
  3. Arja Salafranca  (South Africa)
  4. Blaize Kaye (South Africa)
  5. Edwin Okolo (Nigeria)
  6. Francis Aubee (The Gambia)
  7. Fred Khumalo (South Africa)
  8. Gamu Chamisa (Zimbabwe)
  9. Gratitude Fisher (South Africa)
  10. Idza L (Kenya)
  11. Karen Jennings (South Africa)
  12. Lauri Kubuitsile (Botswana)
  13. Mirette Bahgat Eskaros (Egypt)
  14. Mignotte Mekuria (Ethiopia)
  15. Mary Ononokpono (Nigeria/UK)
  16. Megan Ross (South Africa)
  17. Nyarsipi Odeph (Kenya)
  18. Okafor Tochukwu (Nigeria)
  19. Stacy Hardy (South Africa)
  20. TJ Benson (Nigeria)
  21. Umar Turaki (Nigeria)

Special Mentions

  1. Caleb Somtochukwu Okereke (Nigeria)
  2. Dzekashu MacViban (Cameroon)
  3. Helen Walne (South Africa)
  4. Kathryn White (South Africa)
  5. Liam Kruger (South Africa)
  6. Linda Daniels (South Africa)
  7. Pamela Zintatu Ntshanga (South Africa)
  8. ZP Dala (South Africa)

This year, three writers were selected and awarded the SSDA/All About Writing Development Prize. These writers will each receive extensive tuition during a 20 Week Online Writing Course with All About Writing. The SSDA team believes that “with a little help, these writers can be the next big thing in #AfricanLit.”

With the long list announced, the journey to the short list starts with a journey of the list to the judging panel including established writers Sindiwe Magona, H.J. Golakai and Tendai Huchu as well as to the editors Efemia Chela and Bongani Kona who will edit the collection under the mentorship of Helen Moffett. The SSDA/Worldreader Editing Mentorship is sponsored by Worldreader. For more on the long list announcement and also other information on the Short Story Day Award, please visit their website HERE.

At SEVHAGE, we wish all of these cool guys especially our TJ Benson, Okafor Tochukwu, Umar Turaki, Mary Ononokpono and Edwin Okolo best of luck on this journey.

TJ Benson (left) and Su’eddie, the proud Big brother. Do I look like a dad here? 😉
Posted in AWARDS, Uncategorized

Blog Numbers of 2015 in review

It wasn’t one of my best years in this blogging business. There were many days, even weeks when I left this space dry… It wasn’t a funny year. A lot of people will testify. But together we made it and…

…we got some numbers. And a few comments 🙂

Thanks for being part of my blogging year and I hope that we can make the new year far better. I hope for more collaborations. Doc Topaz, I owe you still. I know.

Have a fabulous year. God bless us. Amen.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 40,000 times in 2015. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 15 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Posted in AWARDS, Uncategorized


Hey, how are you? I hope you are fine. Even if things are difficult, they will only get better. Trust me, I know. This is that season when there is so much pressure. You know, trying to make things right even as this tight economy makes you wonder if you are human. Money seems to be the new currency of laughter and happiness or isn’t it? No, it isn’t. It is necessary but pay attention; there are smiles you can plant to leave much more people happy. How? I don’t know. I am trying to find that one out too! Hee hee hee.

So, what is this post about?

I am learning to write. There’s this thing happening; I am retiring, don’t tell anyone. Well, don’t worry, it isn’t permanent. It is for the year 🙂 And…there’s a need for reinvention… but I am trying to plan something new for 2016 and I need your help.

You see, I want to give a gift out to you, and to me. No, don’t start sending me a list of your dreams… I will help you pray for them truly (what else can I do really? Hee hee hee)… but I can give you a gift with what I have; writing. Let me write you a story—or a poem. What would you want?

If you had the chance of me writing something for you or something you’d love, what would it be? Don’t worry, give all the specifics. You can write it here or send me a mail at

But let’s return to you… The year is coming to an end. It has been a fast year. I remember only last year when I was smiling into the skies at a carnival somewhere, surrounded by friends as we discussed literature. It is hard to believe it is the end of 2015. What did this year do to you? Are you prepared with new resolutions you wouldn’t keep? Hee hee hee! Start implementing them before tomorrow. Never leave till later what you can do now…

Now, have a lovely evening and night, when day comes, may it be lovelier. Things will smile definitely. Wherever you are, please, don’t lose hope and don’t lose faith. Dream more dreams and if you have a way of passing a compliment to someone, do so. We all need us. Go ahead, make a day brighter. May the times be kind.




PS: Don’t forget to send me the ideas and yes, we can collaborate! Yaaaay!

smile people

Here’s sending a special shout out to Subman – who has been dancing on my blog in cool steps. I am coming your way soon. Thanks to my big sis, Dotta Raphels, Williamleeone, Yemie, Damore (Me the blogger), Lefthandedscribbler,Debbie Iorliam, Aondosoo Labe, Melodic Rose, Topazo, DrSwag, Zika, and Belle, among all you others. You make this thing worth it. Thanks.




Call For Submissions: 2015 ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIAN AUTHORS Literary Prizes

For Release: April 7, 2015
The Association of Nigerian Authors [ANA] hereby announces a range of prizes for its 2015 literary competitions. These are:
1. ANA Prize for Poetry (published & unpublished) – N 100,000.
2. ANA Prize for Prose Fiction (published & unpublished) – N 100,000.
3. ANA Prize for Drama (published & unpublished) – N 100,000.
4. ANA Prize for Literary Journalism – N 100,000 (Deadline: August 30, 2015).
5. ANA\NECO Teen Author Prize (prose) N 100,000.00 (published & unpublished works).
6. ANA\Mazariyya Teen Authors Prize (poetry) N 50,000.00 (published & unpublished works).
ANA is pleased to introduce two new prizes, endowed by Mrs. Maria Ajima and Dr. Wale Okediran, respectively:
7. Maria Ajima Prize for Literary Criticism (Focus on African Literature) – N100,000
8. ANA Abubakar Gimba Prize for Fiction (short stories) – N200,000.
Nigerian writers, home and abroad, desirous of entering their works for the Annual Literary Prizes, may now do so. Works entered should have been published between March 2014 and March 2015.
1. An entry fee of N3,000 per entry,  paid by the author or the publisher, in favour of:
Association of Nigerian Authors
First Bank of Nigeria Plc
[Bodija Market Branch Ibadan]
Account No. 2020543538
Please Note 
[a] The entry fee is for the purpose of prize administration only.
[b] A photocopy of the appropriate Deposit Slip[s] MUST accompany Requirement #2 below.
2. Six copies (6) of the book or manuscript to be entered, specifying the Prize being entered for, alongside a covering letter and the photocopy of the Deposit Slip used in Requirement 1 above, should be sent by post to:
The General Secretary,
Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA),
c/o Suite 63,
National Theatre Complex,
The covering letter should contain accurate contact details of the writer or/and publisher of the work, including email and surface mail addresses and telephone numbers.
Please Note
[a] The Association will NOT take responsibility for entries sent by post nor will it claim registered parcels in cases where it has to pay for such entries or parcels.
[b] Multiple entries, where applicable, are allowed but a work must not have been entered for the same prize prior to the present entry and it must have been published between 2014 and 2015.
SPECIFIC GUIDELINES for Teen Authors Prize (published and unpublished works). 
1. Entrants must be students in any secondary school in Nigeria.
2. Entries must be a collection or a single story of between 35 – 40 pages or above for prose or poetry.
3. Illustration (optional).
4. Accompanying documents are:
(i) Signed letter of identification from school principal on school letterhead.
(ii) Two passport photographs, name, and copy of birth certificate of the entrant.
(iii) Entrant’s school admission letter (photocopy).
(iv) Current cumulative record of entrant’s academic performance (junior or secondary school).
(v) Letter of consent from parents.
(vi) Entrant’s or their guardian’s email, surface mail address and phone number.
5. Unpublished entries (in four copies) should be properly bound.
6. Teen Authors are NOT required to pay an entry fee.
SPECIFIC GUIDELINES for Maria Ajima Prize for Literary Criticism (published and unpublished works) 
Length: Between 25-30 pages of A4 paper size following format of academic essays.
 1. Type double spaced using MS Word. Use Times New Roman Type face 12 point font size.
2. The essay, if published in a journal, book or as electronic text, must be within the valid dates indicated on this call for submissions.
3. Referencing style is either the latest MLA or APA style.
4. Five hard copies as loose sheets or as a bound monograph are to be submitted to ANA, plus a soft copy sent by email to
 5. The competition will be rotated annually in areas surrounding poetry, drama, prose fiction and theory.
6. The essay should not be of generalized survey, but should rather be focused on specific texts of a few selected authors at a time.
7. The essay should state where the texts or performance analysed can be accessed or located.
In addition, all other rules pertaining to ANA competitions are applicable.
Copyright: The copyright to every winning entry is to be held by the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), Maria Ajima Trust, and the author of the work. The winning entry will be published in subsequent ANA Reviews.
SPECIFIC GUIDELINES for ANA Abubakar Gimba Prize for Fiction [Short Stories].
1. Only published work are accepted.
2. Seven [7] copies of each entry are to be sent in.
3. Entries must have been published no earlier than twenty four months BEFORE the date indicated on the call for submissions.
In addition, all other rules pertaining to ANA competitions are applicable.
Deadline for the receipt of ALL entries, excepting the Prize for Literary Journalism, for the 2015 ANA Literary Prizes is Friday, May 22, 2015. A shortlist will be announced in September, 2015.
Winners of the prizes will be announced by the judges at the Awards Dinner during the 34th International Annual Convention of the Association of Nigerian Authors in October/November, 2015.
Richard Ali
Publicity Secretary [North]
Association of Nigerian Authors



Opening date – 1 February 2015

Closing date – 30th April 2015

Entries must be submitted online. No mark as to the identity of the writer should be made on the story itself. No entries will be considered if submitted after the deadline. Winners shall be announced on Short Story Day Africa, the 21st of June 2015 at an Awards Evening during the Writivism Festival 2015 in Kampala, Uganda.

1. The Writivism Short Story Prize is an annual award for emerging African writers administered by the Center for African Cultural Excellence (CACE).

2. Entrants must be unpublished writers, resident in an African country. One is deemed published if they have a book of their own.

3. Questions of eligibility shall be resolved by the CACE administration and their decision is final.

4. Entries must be submitted online, by emailing them to as attachments (not in the body email), clearly labeled in the subject: Writivism Competition 2015. The writer must include in the body of the email, other information about him/her, as country of residence, age, legal name and pen name (where applicable) and telephone contact.

5. Only one entry per writer may be submitted for the Writivism Short Story Prize. The story must be original and previously unpublished in any form except on the writer’s personal blog.

6. All entries must be in English, and 2,500 – 3,500 words long.

7. Entries should be attached in Microsoft Word or Rich Text formats, with the title of the story as the file name. The first page of the story should include the name of the story and the number of words. The entry must be typed in Times New Roman 12 point font and 1.5 line spacing. No mention should be made on the identity of the writer in the entry.

8. Entrants agree as a condition of entry that CACE may publicize the fact that a story has been entered, longlisted or shortlisted for the Prize. The shortlisted writers and winners of the competition will be expected to participate in readings, The Writivism Festival and school tours.

9. Worldwide copyright of each story remains with the writer. CACE will have the unrestricted right to publish the long-listed stories in an anthology and for promotional purposes.

10. The prize judging panel comprises Chika Unigwe (Chair), Mukoma wa Ngugi, Tendai Huchu, Rachel Zadok and Ainehi Edoro. Read more about the judges here.


2014 Association of Nigerian Authors’ Prize Winners Announced! (Archival Purpose)

The winners of the Association of Nigerian Authors’ Prizes for the year 2014 were announced on the 13th of December 2014 during the course of the 33rd National Convention. The winners are—

May Ifeoma Nwoye [ANA/Chevron Prize for Environmental Writing] with Oil Cemetery;

Su’eddie Vershima Agema [Joint Poetry] with his Home Equals Holes: Tale of an Exile and Ebi Yeibo [Joint Poetry] with his The Fourth Masquerade;

Soji Cole [ANA/Esiaba Irobi Prize for Playwriting] with Maybe Tomorrow;

Immanuel James [ANA Prize for Prose] with Under Bridge;

Tunji Ajibade [ANA Prize for Drama] with The Sacrifice.

There was a presentation ceremony and dinner in their honour at the Glory View Hotel, Ibadan.

Honourary prizes were also given to Dr. Maria Ajima and other individuals for their contributions to literature. The ANA Prizes for literature are usually open for submissions in March and are among the premier prizes in Nigeria due to the prestige of the association and its members.



The Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA) convention was slated for Thursday 11th December, 2014 to end on the 14th at Ibadan, the capital city of Oyo. The ground for the event was the historic University of Ibadan. You can imagine my excitement to be there. I could not wait to have my feet stamped, fully registered where most of the pioneers of African literature like the great Nigerian three–consisting of Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka and the poet, Christopher Okigbo—had done theirs. It was nice to note that this visit would be an opportunity to acquaint myself with contemporary writers from around the nation. Oh! It was also my first time of visiting the town. It was like a pilgrimage, because I was also longing to engage myself in what has become my hobby looking admiringly at creative and educational books and telling myself: “If I had money…” Ah! I knew I would storm the large bookshops and look up everything until the end of time!

We left Makurdi by seven o’clock. I was among the delegates from Benue State chapter of the association attending the convention. Some other delegates included the state Chairman and secretary, the poets Su’eddie Vershima Agema and Maik Ortserga; Vice Chairman Paul Ugah; Pever X (author of Cat Eyes); my colleagues at SEVHAGE Publishers, Debbie Iorliam and Ene Odaba; Sunday Aduma and the playwright, Doobee Dorcas Targba. Three other delegates; Celina Kile, Anselm Ngutsav and Damian Terkaa Jam, were to join us at the convention from different parts of the country.

I thought of Ibadan and of how I would be registering my presence at the Ibadan university, sighting the old rusty town and going book-window-shopping. My curiosity of what awaited blinded me to the slow pace of the Benue Links bus that took us some thirteen hours from Makurdi to Ibadan. I personally regarded the bus as a jealous one; jealous of the multiple joys I would be experiencing soon. Instead of blaming the bus and its driver, like most of my fellow passengers, I let my imagination take me to great halls I had no idea of, where I shared intellectual meals with the great three, amongst others. Only my body found presence in the bus as my spirit flew away. Thus started my convention.

We arrived town and found our way to the University which was directly opposite the bus park. Despite the lateness of the time, the presence of the ambience of the great three was unmistakable. It was that day that I really knew the functionality of my sense. I touched spirits, heard them and felt them. We got to the faculty of Arts where we registered ourselves and waited for further details of what would follow. We got a lovely ANA Review of great quality in publication, as well as other registration materials which included full color magazines on Chinua Achebe and Wole Soyinka. We were served a meal. My desire now was for dawn, so that I could locate the feet marks of sojourners long gone, the great three too, if possible.

Time passed slowly. By this time, there was a literary party in full swing. The ANA President, Remi Raji and his EXCO among other members of the Association were already there, being thrilled in the opening ceremony tagged: ‘Night of Palmwine and Poetry’ under the mouthy direction of the actor and PEN Nigeria Secretary, Ropo Ewenla. It was thrilling as many poets like Chijioke Amu-nnadi, I call him a man of small letters since he writes all his poetry in small letters; Saddiq M Dzukogi; Uthman Ajibola, amongst others read their own poems. There was also a dramatization of the terror in the North as led by the Boko Haram champion Abubakar Shekau, by one of the spoken words poet. Though I was worn out, the thought provoking presentation evoked in me an unexpected flood of pity, hopelessness, insecurity that tears almost filled my eyes especially as the un-rescued Chibok girls were gradually sinking into oblivion. Just when I thought my patience would wear out, our Chairman, Su’eddie Vershima Agema came out and led us to the hotel where we would stay for the night; the U.I. Hotels. The Boko Haramic presentation kept echoing in my mind: “Walahi, talahi, I wili kilan por you, all of you. I am coming por you.”

Most of the events of the second day of the convention were held at the large lecture theatre of the University Faculty of Arts. It was actually a life fulfilling moment for me, in as much as Soyinka did not grace the occasion as I expected. The public lecture complemented me as I finally set my eyes and felt a physical interaction with the man who had been talking to me in diverse critical books and papers, Professor J. O. J. Nwachuckwu-Agbada–who presented the keynote address. Before his address, there was a speech by the President of ANA, Professor Remi Raji, who is the Dean of the Faculty of Arts and also, a speech by the representative of President Goodluck Jonathan, Ms. Molara Wood (the author of Indigo and Special Adviser to the President on Documentation). From the speech of both, it seemed the President had given the Association a donation to support the convention. The President promised to put writers in the scheme of things and properly establish his efforts through the Ministry of Culture and Tourism! Remi Raji said Ibadan was a salvage host of the convention while Port Harcourt was the honourary host of the convention. He made a promise hinged on a promise; that by next year the ANA convention would hold in Abuja at the ANA Writers’ village.

Anyway, the MC, Mrs. Chinyere Obi-Obasi invited Camillus Ukah, to come and do a citation in honour of the keynote speaker. He did well using traditional nuances to say that the honoured Professor was a tall tree of great magnitude. Sufficiently introduced, Professor Nwachukwu-Agbada presented a brilliant and mind-lifting paper titled: “Literature, Languages and Diversities: How Has Nigeria Fared since 1914?” In it, Agbada gave a concise history of how what came to be regarded as Nigerian literature emerged, and the language issue surrounding it. Questions followed the presentations and Professor Agbada again demonstrated his scholarship by swallowing them up and vomiting appropriate answers. After the refreshments that really relaxed my nerves, there was a Book chat on the Nigerian Writers’ Series, headed by Mallam Denja Abdullahi, the ANA Vice Chairman. The Nigerian Writers’ Series is the Nigerian equivalent of the African Writers’ Series. In summary, 10 books were published by ANA with support from the Niger State Governor, Aliyu Babangida. One of the authors on the list is our very own Pever X with his Cat Eyes. Pever X is the Publicity Secretary of our state branch of ANA and a talented writer. The book chat went well and people like Chike Ofili, Chinyere Obi-Obasi spoke well in the session.

We retired after that session and I found my way to the university bookshop in the company of Paul Ugah and Sunday Aduma. We met Su’eddie at the bookshop with a friend of his, Servio Gbadamosi. Su’eddie later served as a tour guide as he is a regular to Ibadan and a patron of its many bookshops, particularly this one. When we were leaving, he packed a whole bag of books!  I packed a whole bag of looks for the way I went about moping at the books. I was enthralled! I love books and this was book heaven! I heard later from Su’eddie that the glory of the library had really depreciated but what on earth was he talking about!

In the evening, there was a show of the Yoruba version of Osofisan’s play Who is Afraid of Tai Solarin? as translated into Yoruba by Dotun Ogundeji and directed on stage by Tunde Kelani. Though it was difficult grasping the English wordings that were hardly staying for long on the screen, the highly comic aspects infused in the movie-stage rendition sent me beaming from ear to ear as I walked to U.I. Hotels.

Dawn sneaked in on us on the third day. We were scheduled to have a tour of Ibadan but we didn’t come out in time, and only our fellow delegates—Debbie Iorliam, Ene Odaba—went for it. They went to the African Heritage Research Library and Cultural Centre. They had much fun that left me wishing… IT was after missing that event due to the incorrect time I was keeping that I discovered the goodness of having an accurate time keeping device.

There was ANA Annual General Meeting which took place at the Large Theatre Hall. However, this took place after returning from ANA City Tours which were at the University Zoo and the African Heritage Research Library and Cultural Centre. In the A.G.M. of ANA, the president gave his speech, then the treasurer presented her report which was commended for its quick readiness and accuracy. Other issues as it concerned ANA were also discussed. The beauty of the AGM was how one does not know that he sits with a professor until he/she stands up to make a point. I left at some point but heard that there was a heated discussion on the suspended Secretary of the association, Tanko Mature Okoduwa who was absent on the day. There was also the issue of the authenticity of which Executive was in charge of the Edo State chapter of ANA…

The convention ended that day, with an enthralling Dinner Night Awards Ceremony at GloryView Hotel Bodija. I did not regret sharpening my teeth and putting on my eye glasses because I ate and I saw things that will forever remain memorable to me. The high table comprised personalities such as Emeritus Professor Femi Osofisan, a one-time President of the Association; Molara Wood (author of Indigo and Special Adviser to the President on Documentation); Professor May Nwoye; Professor Remi Raji – the ANA President to mention a few. The representative of the President of Nigeria, Molara Wood gave a speech after the welcome speech of the ANA President (after hailing the high table members, he simply said ‘Welcome’). There were also some presentations, the best of which was Iquo Eke’s performance of her poem, ‘Say my name’ with an actor/performer. Then it was time for the award presentation. The awards started with the general category which included awards to people for contributions to literature. Our Benue ANA matron and my lecturer, Dr. Maria Ajima was awarded for her contribution to the growth of literature and the association.  My boss, our Chairman, Su’eddie was up for two prizes after being shortlisted in the prose and poetry categories of the ANA awards with his books, Bottom of Another Tale and Home Equals Holes: Tale of an Exile respectively. We had interest in two awards too—Damian Terkaa Jam’s Sounds of a Metal Gong and Dul Johnson’s Melancholia, both books published by SEVHAGE, where I work. The hall went quiet as the awards started with the general awards.

The award for playwriting was announced; winner Soji Cole. The ANA/Chevron Prize for Environmental Writing (worth Two Thousand Dollars) went to Ifeoma May Nwoye. Next, the ANA Prize for Drama was announced. Dul Johnson’s play was shortlisted in this category. He lost to Tunji Ajibade who took the prize. The ANA Prose Prize was the next category and I held my breath. Su’eddie’s book came second runner-up while Immanuel James took the prize on account of the long length of the book or so the judges said. Our delegation was saddened. It was the last category next, the Poetry category. The judges announced that the competition was tough and that in the end, even out of their shortlist, a joint tie had been drawn. The winners are—Su’eddie Vershima Agema with Home Equals Holes: Tale of an Exile and Ebi Yeibo with his The Fourth Masquerade! We jumped up in smiles as we celebrated. Of all the winners, only May Nwoye and Su’eddie were present to receive their awards. The other awardees had their awards collected on their behalf by people in their chapters except for Immanuel James who no one seemed to know.

Soon, Richard Ali gave his parting speech. We trooped out, smiling. We got back to the hotel—Sunday Aduma and I—and before we hit the bed, probably slept.

The next day, we were up by 5:30am to head back to Makurdi. It was another long journey, and our delegates discussed all the 13 hours of the way. The weekend behind and a lifetime of experiences to hold on to, I looked forward to whatever literary adventure lay ahead.

Terese Uwuave, writer and critic, lives in Makurdi and Sokoto state, Nigeria.



The following creative works are shortlisted in alphabetical order (by titles of entries) and not necessarily in order of merit. The eventual winners will be announced at the Award Dinner of the 33rd International Convention of the Association of Nigerian Authors in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

Bottom of Another tale by @Su’eddie Vershima Su’eddie Vershima Agema
Habiba by Razinatu Talatu Mohammed
Under Bridge by Immanuel James

Among the Survivors by Million John
Oil Cemetry by May Ifeoma Nwoye
The Fall of Silence by Inyang E. Ekwo


Home Equal Holes: Tales of an Exile by Su’eddie Vershima Agema
Silent Whispers by C. P. Christopher
Sound of a Metal Gong by Damian Terkaa Jam
Sunbeams and Shadows by Saddiq M Dzukogi
The Fourth Masquerade by Ebi Yeibo

Maybe Tomorrow- by Soji Cole
Melancholia – by Dul Johnson
Sweet Taste of Shame- by Elaigwu Ameh
The sacrifice- by Tunji Ajibade
Trafficked- by Phillip Begho

Erimma – by Ikechukwu E. Asika
Makwada – by Sanamo David Lagwampa
Maybe Tomorrow – by Soji Cole


The Empty Cage by @Nma Hassan Mohammed
Three Strange Stories for Children by Jide Ogunlana.
Johnny Just Come by Phillip Begho
Prof. Nelson Fashina
Assoc. Prof. Emmanuel Sule Egya
Dr Salihu Bappa
Mrs Joan Oji.

Signed by:

Richard Ali
ANA National PRO (North)