Last week was Ghanaian Literature Week, the third edition of the annual celebration of literature and discussions of book/reading related issues in Ghana. The event is mainly hosted in Accra the capital of the West African country that seems obsessed with electing Presidents whose first name is John in recent times. A lot of the action happens on line.
As the Ghanaian literary community celebrated its best and brightest with a series of events and review of books the late Professor Kofi Awoonor who recently passed on in Nairobi has been looming large. He was a guest at the recently passed Storymoja Hay Festival in Nairobi. He was one of three Ghanaians who had been attending the festival which is starting to become THE Kenyan literature festival. They included Nii Parkes who is not only a writer of prose and poetry but a publisher as well and poet Kwame Dawes.
On the day he was to give a presentation with his fellow Ghanaian poets he opted to have brunch with his son and another person when terrorists attacked the Westgate Mall. The good poet passed on.The tributes came fast and thick in Kenya and included a major tribute to the professor.
As the Ghanian literature community started last week the tributes from the departed from his countrymen were quite touching and included Afrilingual blog with their literature week special and the African thought run by Kwabena Agyare Yeboah with its own tribute. For all the reviews and pieces done of the big week please visit the semi-official page of the week.
On our part here I would like to say congratulations to Ghanaians for their third week celebrating their literature. And we are really sorry about Westgate; we couldn’t do anything about it. Seriously.