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PIN opens entries for students poetry prize


Prof. Christian Anieke with NSPP 2018 winner, Godstime Iberiyenari

Organisers of the Nigerian Students Poetry Prize (NSPP) have opened entries for this year’s contest. Now the flagship literary prize for undergraduates in Nigeria’s tertiary institutions, the NSSP is an initiative of Poets In Nigeria (PIN).

While reeling out modalities for the prize in Lagos, Kolade Olarenwaju Freedom, PIN’s secretary and moderator of the prize, said, it is “aimed at stimulating literary creativity, promoting literary excellence and encouraging critical thinking among Nigerian undergraduates.”

Since inception, in 2016, at the University of Ibadan, the prize has received over 1,500 entries from about 100 tertiary institutions (including universities, polytechnics, colleges of education, schools of nursing and seminary schools).”

Freedom added that entries would close on March 15, 2019, while the first three winners would be named at a ceremony slated for the Niger Delta University, Wilberforce Island, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, later in the year.

The winners are expected to get N150,000, N100,000 and N50,000 respectively.Previous winners include, Noah Oladele (Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, in 2016), Bakre Fadil Adedamola (University of Ibadan, in 2017) and Godstime Tamunofiri Iberiyenari (Niger Delta University, Wilberforce Island, Yenagoa in 2018).

Meanwhile, the organisation has launched a connecting centre at the Ojokoro neighbourhood of Lagos State.According to PIN’s President, Eriata Oribhabor, the organisation has over the years expanded its connecting centres across the country as it aims to take poetry to the grassroots. He added that there are still more centres to be open.

“We could have had more centres in the country. We want able hands to lead the centres, that’s why they’ve not been opened yet,” he stated.At the opening of the PIN Ojokoro’s connecting centre, two recently released poetry collections of Oribhabor were unveiled by a past chairman of Lagos chapter, Chike Ofili.

According to Oribhabor, the collections, Random Thoughts on Poetry and Shifting Rights of Poetikness, comprised some poems he had shared on his social media platforms, especially Facebook.“Use the social media rightly. When you write on Facebook, write as if you are writing for posterity,” he said.

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