The Abuja Chapter of the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), the foremost Writers’ Club established by internationally acclaimed Nigerian novelist Chinuagolu James Achebe and company, has just elected a new Executive Council to run its affairs for the next three years.
Following a keenly contested election, the following persons emerged in the indicated positions:
Chairman – Eriata Oribhabor;Vice-Chairman – Peter Oguejiofor;Secretary – Joy Okoduwa; Assistant Secretary – Salamatu Sule;Financial Secretary – Ishaya Luka;Legal Adviser – Barrister Emmanuel Obia and Public Relations Officer – Izuchukwu Okeke
ANA Abuja was an early arrival in Abuja but went dormant for many years until it was kicked awake by the literary Jamming and Slamming activities of Mr. Victor Anoliefo and the Abuja Literary Society (ALS), which he founded. As ALS became the toast of the diplomatic, academic and other enlightened strata of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) population, ANA was pushed to reactivate its membership and traditional activities such as readings and critique sessions and Guest Writer’s Sessions to help promote reading and writing. The new Executive is already reaching out to stake holders and friends of the letters in FCT ahead of a soon to be convened General Meeting, seeking ideas on how best to run the association for the benefit of all members and the community at large.
Many other groupings in the Writers’ Tribe in the FCT have since sprung up, making Abuja quite full of creative, literary and visual as well as performing artistic activity around the city. Among them are Abuja Writers’ Forum (AWF) established by award-winning poet Dr. Emman Shehu, with its many innovative activities; a poetry group known as GAP led by El- Nathan, and some others.
ANA Abuja and its National Secretariat have also endowed a number Literary Prizes as has AWF, while a former National President, award-winning writer, medical doctor and former House of Representatives member, Wale Okediran has established the Egbedi Writers Residency in serene Iseyin town in his native Oyo state, Nigeria.
Dr. Jerry Agada, veteran teacher, writer and publisher, former Minister of state for Education and immediate past National President of ANA, currently Chairman at the National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE), has also been partnering with the Federal Government and private initiatives in the FCT to promote the reading culture, in line with President Goodluck Jonathan’s Bring Back the Books scheme.
Another Abuja –based group, the Arojah Concepts/Theatre Group, led by Haiku poetry and theatre enthusiast, Prince Jerry Adesewo, has also been partnering with the very supportive Korean Cultural Centre a section of the Korean diplomatic Mission in Nigeria, to promote performance poetry and drama in FCT.
FCT is therefore a centre of ‘Crazitivity’ now, to use the coinage of a group which goes by that name. With the entrance into the fray by National Institute of Cultural Orientation (NICO) boss Dr. Barclays Ayakoroma with his play-reading as performance, the show is just beginning in the project to save Abuja from the philistine spirit and fill it up with the books, the Arts and all the performance. And all that should gladden the hearts of the Social Secretariat of the FCT Administration and the Kayode Aiyegbusi-led Performing Arts Division, which has since revived the monthly drama-on-stage series by the Department, for the entertainment and education and enlightenment of residents of FCT…
New Special Review On Women And Rights Advocacy In the Offing
By Jim Pressman, Gender Reporter
WOMEN’S HUMAN RIGHTS ONLINE & THE UNIVERSAL PERIODIC REVIEW (UPR), have announced the second cycle of the Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR), coming up from 21 May to 4 June 2012, at the United Nations Office in Geneva, Switzerland.
UPR is a unique mechanism for UN member-countries to tell their peer-countries what they have achieved in promoting human rights, but also for non-state actors to raise issues of concern in a non-confrontational fashion.
According to Flavia Fascendini, the editor of GenderIT.org in an edition of GenderIT.org thematic bulletin* APC WNSP – 10 April 2012, this edition will allow interested parties to learn more about the current discussions about women’s human rights on the internet, with a particular focus on the country reports for Brazil, Ecuador, India, the Philippines, and South Africa for the UPR process made by APC and their partners.
The reports raise for the first time internet-related women’s human rights issues as part of the UPR and in the edition, three women human rights defenders and co-authors of the country reports for Brazil, Ecuador, and the Philippines have been asked about the importance of the UPR for the rights and daily lives of women, the trends in exercising women’s and sexual rights online, and their tips on how women’s and sexual rights activists can support their advocacy through the UPR process.
Writes Daysi Flores, the regional coordinator of communication for JASS Mesoamerica, on Discovering worlds and sharing resistances online, “As a girl growing up in the 80s in Central America, in Honduras, who went to state schools, I had few chances to access any type of technology. It was even difficult for us to access books as a source of knowledge, and letters were a form of communication to which only some of us had access. All of the music – other than the music that my mother listened to – was only available in English…”
Interested persons can read the full editorial at: http://www.genderit.org/node/3567 The edition, also features among others things, five country reports – Brazil, Ecuador, India, the Philippines and South Africa – that were submitted to the UN Universal Periodic Review, which will convene at the UN in May 2012. Each of the submissions was written in collaboration with the local members and partners of the Association for Progressive Communication, including: the Digital Empowerment Foundation, Nupef, Sangonet, CIESPAL, and Radialistas Apasionadas y Apasionados, the Women’s Legal and Human Rights Bureau, among others.
Meanwhile, another announcement states that from 19 – 22 April 2012, APC and GenderIT.org will join over 2000 women’s rights activists from around the world at the 12th AWID International Forum in Istanbul, Turkey. The Forum’s theme is on the issue of economic power, and how this impacts on women’s rights and the planet.
APC will be bringing to the Forum their work and perspectives on internet rights as a key feminist issue, focusing on privacy, security, resource mobilization and the role of the private sector in internet governance. GenderIT.org will be providing live coverage of the AWID Forum through blogs and on Twitter. Interested persons can post their questions and thoughts to @GenderITorg on Twitter. Hashtags: #awidforum #ftxawid.
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