The Lagos Book & Art Festival is set to happen at the Freedom Park in Lagos from November 13 – 15. This year’s festival which is the 17th edition will be dedicated to the memory of Ken Saro-Wiwa who fought for the rights of the Ogoni people and was executed by a very bad man called Sani Abacha 20 years ago.
The main events to do with our dearly departed Saro-Wiwa include a keynote address by GG Darah a professor of English at the Delta State University, Abraka, Delta State which will be chaired by Fred Agbeyegbe and have Nnimmo Bassey and Sanya Osha as panelists.
There will also be a panel discussion on Ken Saro-Wiwa & Nation Building featuring On A Darkling Plain, Similia, Peter Dumbrock’s Prison, A Month and A Day. These were Saro Wiwa’s major non- fiction narratives focusing on the theme of self-determination and nation building. There will also be a reading of In The Shadow of a Saint: Politics, Nationalism and the Ogoni Protest Movement by Sanya Osha. This will be followed by the writer Osha who is withTshwane University of Technology, Pretoria, South Africa alongside Derin Ajao, Ed Keazor, Adebola Rayo and Pierre Cherrua .
Apart from these Ken Saro-Wiwa themed events there are many other people and events to experience. There will be film screenings, concerts, book readings and launches of new books.
Once can see live writers, poets, publishers, academics and reviewers doing a variety of events like panels, colloqiums and more. Some of these include Jelili Atiku, Aderemi Adegbite, Efe Paul Azino, Jumoke Verissimo, Diseye Tantua. Bob-nosa Uwagboe, Nkechi Nwosu-Igbo, Ayotunde Olofintunade, Ogaga Ifowodo, Niran Okewole, Damola Mabogunje, Irede Abumere , Tom Burgis, Chuma Nwokolo, Femi Aisida, Jide Bello , Bunmi Oyinsan, Toun Williams, Abdulaziz Ude, Temi Halim, Ed Keazor , Elnathan John, Abubakar Adam Ibrahim, Bibi Bakare-Yusuf, Dr. Patrick Dele Cole, Kunle Ajibade and Ben Tomoloju .
There will also be a very cool feature where the festival organisers will be celebrating landmark birthdays of distinguished contributors to the Nigerian cultural Life. They include Fred Agbeyegbe @ 80, Sam Amuka @ 80, Frank Aig-Imoukhuede @80, Demas Nwoko @ 80, Muyiwa Oduyoye @80, Gbenga Sonuga @ 70 and Dele Jegede @ 70.
If you are in Lagos at the end of this week then the Freedom Park is the place to be.
P.S. I’ll see you there folks. For those who can’t be there I will be keeping you abreast of what is going on at the Freedom Park.