Another African statesman and fine gentleman, David Rubadiri, poet, academic and diplomat, has died at the age of 88.
Abuja comes alive with the Abuja Writers Forum’s Abuja Literary Festival scheduled for June 28-30 2018 at NICON Luxury Hotel, Abuja. Themed ‘Telling Our Stories in the 21st Century’, the festival will feature book chats, exhibitions, film shows, performances, master classes and other literary events to spice up the artmosphere.
This is the second edition of the festival which premiered in November 2008 and will boast an array of amazing creatives like SEVHAGE’s very own Professor Dul Johnson (yaaaaay!), Professor Zaynab Alkali, Professor Idris Amali, superstar director Ishaya Bako, the talented Carlton Lindsay Barrett (who is also the father of A. Igoni Barrett), ANA Legal Adviser and multiple award winning dramatist Isaac Attah Ogezi, my person Theresa Ameh (aka Auntie Talatu), the beautifully talented Sifa Asani Gowon, novel pro/legal star Edify Yakusak, the illustrator Mustapha Bulama, of course Dr. Emman Shehu (AWF President), Mike Ekunno…to mention a few. Okay, to mention a few others that I know: Domitila Sa’adatu Modesti, Dr. Al-Bishak, Dr. Onyebuchi James Ile, Blossom Ozurumba, the poetic trio of Olumide Olaniyan, Amina Aboje, Sodiq Alabi, Chido Onumah, Jamaine Abidogun, Ibrahim Sheme (famed journalist), Wole Coker (ED Programmes of NTA).
I will probably be moderating one of the sessions. You would want to catch me there. 🙂
Continue reading “ATTEND AWF’S ABUJA LITERARY FESTIVAL 2018 (JUNE 28-30 2018) AT NICON LUXURY HOTEL ABUJA”
I am almost running out of breath in order to type this… Yes, my battery might soon die off since NEPA (or DISCO as they call themselves now) have danced away with the light. Weya, there isn’t too much time for talk:
OXFAM holds a night of poetry and photos today at British Council, Maitama, Abuja by 5pm. It hopes to be a thrilling event and it is themed ‘Protection of Civilians in the North East Crisis.’ I hope that they will soon do one for Civilians in the Middle Belt too… Wait o, why not ‘Protection of Civilians in Nigeria’… Okay, we can do that one ourselves. But for now, let’s come and get inspired even as we unite in the arts to do our part in bringing the peace in Nigeria. Details?
EVENT: OXFAM ‘A Night of Poetry and Photo Exhibition’
VENUE: British Council, Maitama, Abuja
TIME: 1700 hours (5:00pm)
DATE: 31st January, 2018
For emphasis, the date is today Wednesday 31st January 2018 and the venue is British Council, Maitama. Time is 5:00pm.
In other news, I will posting info on this event as well as others that happened in the past week in the days to come so hold on as we thrill you to the literary side of Naija – well, mainly Makurdi and Abuja 🙂
Birthday post not forgotten… No matter how short, we go do am. Summary is at the end of the day, I had a running stomach despite hardly eating the whole day!
OXFAM Night of Poetry and Photo Exhibition, date is today Wednesday 31st January 2018 and the venue is British Council, Maitama. Time is 5:00pm.
Nigeria’s Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka is to visit Benue ahead of the 2017 Annual International Convention of the Association of Nigerian Authors ANA, holding in Makurdi come October 26. The famous writer is coming for a special reading and to also visit the flood displaced persons, alongside other writers in the state and the country general.
Chairman of the Local Organising Committee for the planning of the Convention, Professor Idris Amali announced this when he led other members to pay a courtesy call on Governor Samuel Ortom at the Benue Peoples House, Makurdi.
He said, while in Benue,Professor Soyinka is expected to kick start a major pre-convention activity with his special reading to a body of intellectuals, creative writers, students and lovers of Literature.
According to Professor Amali, the visit of the Nobel Laureate is unique because it would not only add to the credibility of the Convention alone but also provide an opportunity for People of the State to meet and interact with him one on one.
The Don maintained that the World acclaimed Literary Giant’s visit to Benue this Month would mark his second coming to the State since Nineteen Eighty Eight.
The LOC Chairman equally told Governor Ortom that a five member delegation from the National Body of the Association of Nigerian Authors, Abuja led by the National President, Mallam Denja Abdullahi would arrive the State same day with Prof. Soyinka for a convention assessment visit.
Responding, Governor Samuel Ortom promised to support the State Chapter of the Association of Nigerian Authors with the necessary logistics and conducive atmosphere for the reception of Professor Soyinka and the delegation from ANA National Headquarters, Abuja.
Governor Ortom noted that he looks forward to hosting Nigerian Authors who have made names across Nigeria and commended members of ANA Benue Chapter for helping to contribute to the development of the knowledge economy of the State with a view to showcasing its People and cultural endowments to the whole World.
The Governor urged the Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Professor Dennis Tyavyar to anchor the two visits and the main ANA Convention from the side of the State Government to ensure that it does not renege on its promise.
Meanwhile,the Benue State Executive Members of ANA led by the Chairman, Mr.Charles Iornumbe at a meeting drew up an itinerary for the visits one of which is the Nobel Laureate’s interface with IDPs at the Makurdi Ultra-Modern International Market. The laureate’s visit alongside other distinguished writers from across the country adds to the list of celebrities around the world who have taken note of the plight of the flood in Makurdi and are supporting their might in various ways.
- Written by Chivir Nyam
The Abuja Writers’ Forum, one of Nigeria’s premier literary organisation is set to host Dul Johnson, incredible writer, scholar and film maker alongside poet Jide Badmus and the sensational musician, Austine Oroko.
If you are in Abuja, do make out time to go to Nanet Suites (beside Bayelsa House, down the road from Federal Secretariat) by 4:00pm for an offering of this great event. SEVHAGE Author, Dul Johnson will be reading from his latest novel, ACROSS THE GULF, a book on the civil war written from a new angle as would leave readers intrigued. This is the third book of Dul’s we have worked on and one of his finest. We had an argument on it – considering he prefers DEEPER INTO THE NIGHT, which is more literary. In his office a month or so ago, I told him that ACROSS THE GULF was a finer read considering it is more entertaining, thrilling and grasping. Being the fine scholar he is, he prefers the one with more lessons.
‘Well, it isn’t as if THE GULF doesn’t have a lot of lessons. But can you imagine that I edited the book and kept smiling all through!’
It is like a continuation of part of the stories in SHADOWS AND ASHES. I am always glad when I come across new narratives, especially when they are engaging. Across the Gulf is a book like that and I think we set the bar with the production of that book’s cover. I will be uploading it soon. But let me not talk too much.
Dr. Emman Shehu has done a good job of consistently hosting writers and artistes every month to a thrilling reading where the public can interact, have fun and get a feel of good literature. I have been a beneficiary of the event – as an invited artiste and as a member of the audience. I think – I don’t think, I know – that it is a place worth going to. IF you can make out time to be there, it would sure be worth the hours.
Did I mention that there is usually great music, a conducive cool (AC chilled) environment, great gifts from raffle draws, amongst other amazing things? Don’t say I didn’t tell you…
For a limited time, Dul Johnson’s book will be selling for a thousand naira at the event. Don’t forget,
Saturday 29th April, 2017; 4:00pm; Nanet Suites. Be there or be square – or whatever they say.
In conclusion, here is the writeup for the event by Ibrahim Ramalan, for Blue Print newspaper… Do share:
The Abuja Writers Forum (AWF) will on Saturday host Jide Badmus, Dul Johnson and Austin (Aush) Oroko for the April 29th edition of its Guest Writer Session which holds at the Aso Hall, Nanet Suites, Central Business District, Abuja by 4pm.
According to a statement signed by the Forum’s scribe, Edith Yassin, in Abuja, one of the guests, Jide Badmus was born and bred in Ilorin, and hails from Omido in Irepodun LGA, Kwara State. The first of four children, he studied Electrical Engineering at the University of Ilorin and bagged a Master’s degree in Information Technology Management at Binary University, Malaysia. He is a practicing Electrical Engineer in building services.
Badmus has had a flair for creative writing as a child and started writing poetry in 2002. He has a wide range of collections on various themes and shares his short stories, critical opinions and poetry on his blog http://www.inkspiredng.com. Some of his works have been published in national dailies and online platforms.
His debut book collection,There Is A Storm In My Head, appeared this year on the imprint of Words Rhymes and Rhythm Ltd (WRR). The poems depict a storm of emotions as a result of life’s uncertainty, disparity between dreams and reality, and the thin line between love and lust. The author’s writing style is defined as simple and deep; his poems are usually brief and fast-paced, the readers are left out of breath and asking for more. He is inspired by nature and beauty.
Jide is married to a beautiful wife, Linda and has an adorable daughter, Nora. He is a Christian and a soccer lover; he is a Manchester United fan. Watching soccer, reading, writing and watching movies are his hobbies. He lives and writes from Lagos.
Dul Johnson is a filmmaker and author from Plateau State and currently lectures, as a Professor of Literature, at Bingham University, Karu. He began his career as a drama director with the Nigerian Television Authority, Jos, and worked for many years before retiring into Independent Filmmaking and teaching. He has won national and international awards with his films and dramas, including There is Nothing Wrong with my Uncle (a cultural documentary), The Widow’s Might (a feature film), Against the Grain, Wasting for the West, Basket of Water, and many others.
Johnson began writing in his undergraduate days, trying his hand at drama, poetry, journalistic writing and short stories. From the mid- to late 1970s he wrote plays for radio (Rima Radio, Sokoto) and for the stage – some of which were produced in his undergraduate days.
Johnson has published five major works: Shadows and Ashes, Why Women Won’t make it to Heaven (short story collections), Ugba Uye: The Living Legend (a biography), Deeper into the Night (a novel) and Melancholia (a play). The last two were presented to the public on 28 October 2014.
His latest publication, Across The Gulf, is a novel that explores loyalty,resilence, nationhood, love and tradition bridging two generations and an entire nation.
Austin Oroko hails from Utonkon, Benue State and is a graduate of the department of languages and Linguistics Nassararwa State University, Keffi. He speaks French and Italian as well as a little German.
Born in Lagos, he likes to describe himself as growing up all over the world with his six siblings as they accompanied their father, a former diplomat, on his official postings.
At the age of fifteen he started writing and singing his own songs with a dream to become a star that will influence the world through his music. Although he owned a keyboard when he was younger, it was his love for the guitar that caught his fancy and has become his mainstay as a performer.
Oroko has been on several notable platforms including AM Express, AIT,NTA Entertainment among others. He spent a lot of time listening and studying classical musicians and the likes of Tracy Chapman and Stevie Wonder who have had a deep influence on him.
His music can be classified as Indie rock with a touch of soul and has recently released a single, Oxygen,
The Guest Writer Session which also features a raffle-draw for books, runs from 4-7pm and is open to the public.
SHARING IS CARING! CHEERS!
Okay, maybe you have heard it or you are hearing it here first. Check everywhere and make a shout for Abubakar Adam Ibrahim has won the $100,000 NLNG Prize for Literature for his novel, Season of Crimson Blossoms. Yaaaaay! He clinched the prize ahead of his literary twin, Elnathan John (with Born on a Tuesday) and Chika Unigwe’s Night Dancer. We saw it coming! Matter of fact, when we got the news, Belle and I tried to make Abubakar to give us our share – or promise to do so when he collected the cheque but the guy has sense too much!
In 2013, while going for the Association of Nigerian Authors’ convention grand dinner, Abubakar and I discussed his travel writings (which I love best of his writings) and Chika Unigwe, who had been announced as the NLNG Winner for that year with her On Black Sister’s Street. Now, it is the turn of the literary Mallam to wear that crown.
It has been a fine year for the gentleman who was announced the 2016 Goethe Institut & Sylt Foundation African Writers’ Residency. He was also announced as the Chairman of the 2016 Etisalat Prize for Flash Fiction.
Abubakar Adam Ibrahim is one of Nigeria’s foremost literary journalists and a committed writers + arts enthusiast who never tires to promote writing in every form. He is also the author of the celebrated collection of short stories, Whispering Trees. You can read more about him here or visit his blog here.
Congratulations Abubakar. And may this season truly be yours!
For 5th October…
Today is World Teachers’ Day. All over the internet, different individuals and organisations celebrated various teachers. What can we do without them? Really, who are we without them? It doesn’t matter if we are talking of our non-formal teachers from mothers to the man in the streets who taught you a lesson or two; or those who taught us in various classes, they all deserve to be celebrated. If you can read what I have written, thank a teacher!
I could write of a million teachers; from Mr. Mbatsavde Emmanuel who tested my composition and became a big brother who I will never forget, to Mr. Atile Godwyns, my uncle and guardian through the high school years; Mr David and Suleiman, Aunty Joy, Mr Ukor Ayem (my primary school proprietor)… The list is endless. I have my parents to think of too; my father and mother, Mr. Charles Ayede, now even Belle, Professor Hyginus Ekwuazi and so many others. I thank the Almighty for each of them.
I spent some good months teaching in a secondary school in Taraba state, teaching Literature-in-English and English to students, some of whom couldn’t speak English! It was fun. The experience of my teaching inspired a short story of mine! I have had cause now on and off, to lecture and supervise some university undergraduates and give lessons to some of my fellow writers who I have also learnt from… What am I saying? Seeing both sides of the coin, I am most honoured that at least today, if only for one day, I can say THANK GOD THERE ARE TEACHERS!
For every one of you has ever taught me a thing or two – either privately or publicly, in class or out of it, I am deeply grateful and even if I don’t get the chance to say many times, I never took it for granted. For those of you, others who are teaching elsewhere, and impacting lives, enduring pain to ensure that students learn and get better, you are the real champions. I remember now Mrs. Marie Aduro, a fair proprietor who sweats it out every day in Minna for her students, fighting demons and policies to kill the illiteracy that looms large in that part of the world. I also remember Jennifer Aduro working hard to develop programmes to help aid in teaching. You are a star girl!
Kukogho Iruesiri Samson keeps on doing what he can to impact lives and today, he is also asking that you nominate a teacher to win 10,000 naira! Yaaaay, isn’t that cool? You can check the link HERE. Kudos to Dr. Emman Shehu, BM Dzukogi, Aidee Erhime, Debbie Iorliam and all the other amazing teachers there too.
Make a teacher happy today…
May the times celebrate and the world treat you kind.
Happy Teachers’ Day!
You must have heard it somewhere that today is Wear It Pink day in Nigeria, yes? No? But it is! So, we are working together – all of us – to try to emphasise early detection of cancer as a means to save lives. Have you heard of cancer? Of course, you have. You think it is farfetched and can’t come near you or yours? Nice joke!
I have seen it first-hand. Only last year, I lost a dear dear loved one, Mr. Peter Aduro to cancer. I still don’t know how it happened and till the end of time, I am sure we will trade different stories about how it happened. Bottom line? Cancer. I have had friends talk about it too, how cancer affected their loved ones. In December last year, an elder friend of mine who is like a big brother, lost someone dear to him too. And the sad part is the cancer just springs on you like that thief in the night…
But I digress much from what happened today, and I hope the digression was it… Today, in collaboration with Nigerians all over the world, we met as partnering Non-Governmental Organisations and Civil Society Organisations to go GAGA PINK! We decided to go beyond a touch of pink to ensure we let the message we heard. We had an activity, discussed cancer – shared thoughts on the way forward, prevention, partnering and conquering. We took lots of pictures that we have shared across different platforms and which I present to you now…
Partners at today’s event included the Gender and Environmental Risk Reduction Initiative team represented by their ED, Mrs Elizabeth Jeiyol, Otene Ogwuche, Tine Agernor, Gift, Caroline Bako; Sewuese Mary and Debbie Ogenyi from Angel’s Foundation and Ikape James from Elohim Development Foundation. Of course, our SEVHAGE Literary and Development Initiative was represented by Su’ur Su’eddie Vershima Agema (me) and Debbie Iorliam. We had discussions on the day of the Girl Child coming on October 11th, 2016. We will work to have an event and also build strategies to help in the management of data to help in uplifting the girl child in line with the SDGs. Read up and see what you can do on that day too… Again, back to our talk on cancer…
Early detection saves lives…so much as you can, spread the word and depending on which type, find ways to test. Trust me, it is more expensive to treat cancer than prevent it. If you detect early you can have just a small part of you chunked away or get some cure… If it reaches a terminal point, you will degenerate and wither like a candle aflame. Trust me, never a pretty sight.
May the times be kind and may we be filled with the wisdom to do those things that would keep us alive, and healthy enough for ourselves and our loved ones. Amen.
PS: Remember, it goes beyond October 5th – I am even posting this on the 6th! Do what you can every day. Together, we can fight and win.