Chihua Achebe, Nigerian Poet Get a Google Doodle

On what would have been his 87th birthday, Google is paying its respects to Chinua Achebe on its homepage.

Achebe’s influence on African literature is inestimable. He’s been described as the “father of modern African literature” with novels which projected Nigerian and African culture globally at a time when much of the continent was freshly free from the shackles of colonialism. The literary icon passed away March 2013 in the United States of America, aged 82.

The Nigerian author’s journey to literary greatness started with Things Fall Apart, his first book. Released nearly 60 years ago in 1958, it’s regarded as one of the most widely read books in Africa. It’s since been translated into fifty languages and has sold over ten million copies.

chihua achebeChihu Achebe | Albert Chinụalụmọgụ Achebe.

The Nigerian author’s journey to literary greatness started with Things Fall Apart, his first book. Released nearly 60 years ago in 1958, it’s regarded as one of the most widely read books in Africa. It’s since been translated into fifty languages and has sold over ten million copies.

The global acclaim of Things Fall Apart, a story about Okonkwo, an Igbo leader who struggles with the arrival of Christian missionaries in his village, was a universal tale about the impact of colonial rule in Africa. It arguably helped set the tone for African literature and writers taking charge of their own narrative using distinct African characters.

In that respect, Achebe can be regarded as a pioneer in the fight to counter lazy racist stereotypes that have been used to portray Africa in literature and journalism. Joseph Conrad, author of Heart of Darkness, a controversial account of a journey on Congo River first published in 1899, has borne the brunt of Achebe’s intolerance of demeaning African tropes. Achebe has called Conrad a “bloody racist” described his book as “totally deplorable.”

The Nigerian government was often also a target of Achebe’s criticism. Twice, in 2004 and in 2011, he rejected the government’s offer to name him Commander of the Federal Republic—one of Nigeria’s very highest honors. Achebe cited unchecked corruption in government as his reason for turning down the awards.

Achebe never shied away from politics, matching his written words with action. Decades ago, during the Biafra war, Achebe sided with Biafra and worked with the breakaway government to push for the creation of a new country. As communications chief for Biafra, Achebe led efforts to secure aid and raise awareness about the plight of his people around the world.

His willingness to speak up on politics through his novels, his essays and speeches were at times controversial but, speaking to American author James Baldwin back in 1980, Achebe explained why politics feature in his art:

Those who tell you “Do not put too much politics in your art” are not being honest. If you look very carefully you will see that they are the same people who are quite happy with the situation as it is. And what they are saying is not don’t introduce politics. What they are saying is don’t upset the system. They are just as political as any of us. It’s only that they are on the other side.


Nigeria Super Eagle Dismantle Argentina 4-2 and Twitter Reacts [Video]

Nigeria super eagle came back from two goals down to secure a stunning victory over Jorge Sampaoli’s men at the Krasnodar Stadium

Football enthusiasts are buzzing across social media after Nigeria sealed an emphatic 4-2 win over Argentina in Tuesday’s friendly encounter.

Nigeria super eagle

Ever Banega and Sergio Aguero put La Albiceleste ahead with their strikes in the 27th and 36th minute before Kelechi Iheancho pulled one back for Gernot Rohr’s men at the death of the first half.

Seven minutes after the restart of the encounter, Alex Iwobi drew both sides level followed by Brian Idowu’s debut goal for the Super Eagles.

Alex Iwobi later doubled his efforts with a cool finish in the 73rd minute doing a nutmeg on Barcelona’s Javier Mascherano.

And the win has left fans buzzing after the Super Eagles started their preparation for next year’s World Cup in Russia on a high.

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Apapa Gridlock | “We’ll Consider all Possible Solutions, says VP Osinbajo

The Buhari administration will find all possible solutions to end the gridlock at Apapa area of Lagos State, according to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN.

Prof. Osinbajo said this on Tuesday at a Government/Private sector meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on how to speedily and comprehensively resolve the issue.

The Vice President further directed that the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing and the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) implement clear objectives to tackle the Apapa traffic gridlock. “We should look at all the components and find a quick solution,” Prof. Osinbajo said.

In his remarks, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, noted that Nigeria ports had capacity for 34 million metric tonnes of cargoes per annum, but which had been exceeded, as it was now processing about 80 million metric tonnes per annum. He also identified poor traffic management as a major cause of the persistent gridlock along Apapa access roads.

In the same vein, the Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala Usman, said the NPA will constitute a strong task force to address the issue.

Both Fashola and Usman assured the Vice President that the issues will be tackled in a holistic way, not only to fix the problem, but also to support the Federal Government’s Ease of Doing Business reforms.

Private sector stakeholders, including the President, Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote; Chairman, Honeywell Group, Dr. Oba Otudeko; and the Chairman, BUA Group, Alhaji Abdulsamad Rabiu, were present at the meeting and they all made commitments.

As part of its Corporate Social Responsibility, the Dangote Group will carry out palliative works and reconstruction of some major sections of the Apapa road, which is expected to be completed by June/July 2018. In the same vein, Honeywell Group will construct a trailer park, while BUA Group will carry out construction works on the Tin Can road.

The VP yemi osinbajo with an aerial view accessment of the gridlock in apapa

Others actions to be taken by the Ministry of Works and the Nigerian Ports Authority include:

  • To reduce congestion and ease traffic; empty containers within the Apapa area to be relocated to holding bays.
  • Shipping companies no longer to be allowed to operate holding bays within the Apapa Port location.
  • Tanks farms not to be permitted within the Apapa area.
  • Process of licencing access to trailer parks and port location by the Nigerian Ports Authority to commence.
  • Advertisement seeking for expression of interests from private sector to operate trailer parks and holding bays within the Tin Can Island area to be issued.
  • A task force to manage the flow of traffic within the Apapa and Tin Can Island environ to be established.

Also present at the meeting were the Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan-Ali, and representatives of the Inspector-General of Police and the Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs.

*Photos below also show Vice President Osinbajo last week Saturday, 9th November, when he flew over the Apapa area for an aerial assessment of the situation.

Ibrahim Idris –“I’m Free to Have Romantic affair with any policewoman”

Ibrahim Idris, the Inspector-General of Police, has said that there is no law that prevents him from marrying a serving female police officer.

He challenged the lawmaker representing Bauchi Central Senatorial District, Senator Isa Misau, who accused him of having an affair with a junior female colleague, to prove him otherwise.

ibrahim idris
Ibrahim Idris | Inspector General of Nigeria Police.

According to Punchng, Idris stated this in a written defence he presented through his lawyer, Dr. Alex Iziyon (SAN), to the Senate ad-hoc committee investigating the allegations against him by the senator.

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He specifically asked the senator to cite a section of the law that prevents him from having a romantic relationship with a policewoman. The police boss recalled that Misau’s father married the lawmaker’s mother while in service.

On the allegation that Idris was having affairs with two female officers who also got questionable promotions as a result, Iziyon said, “This allegation is laughable and showed lack of understanding of the provisions of the Police Act and regulation.”

He said, “Until he brings such section of the Police Act, it will amount to discussing the Inspector-General of Police’s private life, which ordinarily should not have been entertained on the floor of the Senate.

It might be appropriate to remind the senator, whose mother retired from the police as an Inspector of Police and a father who retired from the police as an Assistant Inspector-General of Police, that the Inspector-General of Police is a Moslem and, according to Islamic Law, can marry four wives provided he can love them equally.”