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Ibrahim wins 2016 NLNG $100,000 Literature Prize

  • No winner for science Prize
  • Banjo describes the winning entry as: “a very skillful and sympathetic narrative
  • NLNG Prize for Literature awards annual prizes to winning entries in the literary genres of Prose Fiction, Drama, Poetry and Children’s Literature on a rotational basis.


Abubakar Adam Ibrahim has emerged the winner of the 2016 NLNG Literature, Ayo Banjo, chairman, advisory board for the prize announced in Lagos on Wednesday. He will be awarded with cash prize of $100, 000.


The three shortlisted novels are: Chika Unigwe’s Night Dancer, Elnathan John’s Born on a Tuesday and Abubakar Adam Ibrahim’s Season of Crimson Blossoms.


Ibrahim who won with his novel, Season of Crimson Blossoms, was announced winner at a world press conference held at the Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos Nigeria after a nine-month long process of adjudication 172 other entries received for the competition.


“It was a strong field this year. The shortlisted entries were very strong and the Board had no difficulty in accepting the recommendation of the panel of judges, considering the subject matter and competent manner in which Ibrahim demonstrated the execution of his work,” said Banjo at the press conference.


Banjo described the winning entry as: “a very skillful and sympathetic narrative handling of a most psychologically and emotionally painful between an aging widow, who seeks release from her culturally imposed sexual repression, and a young outcast leader of a group of “weed” – i.e. hard drug – dealers who are ready thugs for politicians.”


The Nigeria Prize for Literature is an annual competition which awards annual prizes to winning entries in the literary genres of Prose Fiction, Drama, Poetry and Children’s Literature on a rotational basis. This year, the genre in focus is Prose Fiction. The following advertised rules were applied during the process of short listing and selecting the winning entry.


According to Banjo, this year’s competition has attracted a strong field with such high quality that even without this current shortlist of three books there would have still been a winner.


However, this year there is no winning entry for the Science Prize. Alfred Susu, Chairman, advisory board, NLNG Science Prize said the theme for the science prize this year is ‘Innovations in Malaria Control’. 15entries were received when the call for entry was announced in February 2016, 13 entries from Nigeria, one entry each from the United States and Europe respectively.


“The quality of the entries was below expectation,” said Susu. “The theme will be repeated and call for entry will be extended for another year.”


While reacting to the verdict, Kudo Eresia-Eke, general manager, external relations, NLNG, , said: “It has been a very rigorous process and we are very happy that at the end of the day, both the International Consultant and the Panel of Judges came to an alignment. We are very proud of the quality of entries received. Let me reiterate very clearly that we will continue to support integrity and excellence, which are some of the pillars we have built NLNG’s success as a company on,” he said.


The decision on the winning entry of The Nigeria Prize for Literature was reached by a panel of judges, led by Professor Dan Izevbaye, a well-respected literary critic and professor of Literature in English; Professor Asabe Usman Kabir, professor of Oral and African Literatures at Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto and Professor Isidore Diala, first winner of The Nigeria Prize for Literary Criticism and professor of African literature in the Department of English, Imo State University, Owerri. The international consultant, Professor Kojo Senanu of the University of Legion, is an internationally acclaimed scholar.

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