Stakeholders, especially the academia have paid glowing tributes to the shining legacies of late literary giant of Africa, Elechi Amadi, and challenged the present generation of young Nigerians to emulate the exemplary virtues and qualities of the author and novelist as a veritable means of contributing meaningfully to the development of the country.
They said this at a book presentation, titled: ‘In A Blaze Of Glory: Creative Tributes To Elechi Amadi,’ in honour of late Elechi Amadi at ‘The Crab,’ Delta Park, University of Port Harcourt, Choba, last Thursday.
Speaking at the book presentation, the reviewer and a lecturer in the University of Port Harcourt, Prof Chidi Maduka tasked Nigerians to always show respect to late author and novelist, Chief Elechi Amadi by attending events organized to honour the legacies of the literary icon as a show of appreciation for his contributions to development of African art and literature.
“There is no other African novelist who has surpassed Amadi as a perceptive depicter of man’s struggle for survival in a world where cosmic forces often play an enigmatic role in human life,” Maduka said, stressing that the memorable legacy of Elechi Amadi to the transformation of the literary landscape in Africa was legendary.
Maduka added that his literary works had placed Nigeria in the World Map, and stressed that it was high time all Nigerians, especially politicians emulate the good legacies of Elechi Amadi.
He pointed out that Elechi Amadi started very early in life in Mathematics and Physics, then switched to Applied Science, noting that he became a living scientist as he kept telling people that the gods were important.
Also speaking, Emeritus Prof Otonti Nduka described the literary icon as “a great man, a great Nigerian, a modest man”, adding “We know who is who, and we know our class. He certainly immortalised his name by impacting the society with his literary works.”
Former Vice Chancellor, University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT), Prof Nemi Briggs described Elechi Amadi as a colossus in Literary Arts world, saying, “Science takes its roots from Arts; the scientists take their thinking from arts. I now have very deep respect for the arts. Elechi Amadi studied science and saw something very bigger in arts. I docked my mind to it,” and advised the Nigeria youth to read very deep in order to exercise their minds.
Another former Vice Chancellor of UNIPORT, Prof Joseph Ajienka described Elechi Amadi as “A celebrated writer and a blessing to this part of the world”, advising that, “Everyone should celebrate him as he was gifted in arts.”
The Chairman of the occasion, and Dean, Faculty of Humanities, Prof Femi Shaka described the event as “A celebration of an icon, role model and an achiever per excellence. That we are celebrating Elechi Amadi today is a testament to the fact that we give him due honour.”
The chairman, who was represented by a professor in Theatre and Film Studies, Emmanuel Emasealu also used the opportunity to describe the wife of Elechi Amadi, Dr Priye Iyalla-Amadi as “A fine example of a lady of substance, vision, tolerance, endurance, hard work and source of inspiration to humanity.”
In his remarks, Rector of Elechi Amadi Polytechnic, Rumuola, near Port Harcourt, Dr Samuel Kalagbor described Elechi Amadi as “A literary giant and an elegant scholar”.
Kalagbor noted that there were so many ways of celebrating a genius, emphasizing that one of the ways was to immortalize their names through monuments, event centres, government-owned institutions, among others, adding that that the change of the name of the Port Harcourt Polytechnic to Elechi Amadi Polytechnic, Port Harcourt, was part of that effort.
“The Governor of Rivers State, Chief Nyesom Wike deemed it necessary to change the name of the institution from Port Harcourt Polytechnic to Elechi Amadi Polytechnic, Port Harcourt because he felt that this was one sure way of immortalizing the literary giant of Africa,” he said.
In her response, the wife of the literary giant, Dr Priye Iyalla-Amadi stated that “I was inspired to put together the pieces that have become a book today in my darkest hours when I heard my husband saying ‘darling, wipe your tears, I am with you.’
“If I am so involved in celebrating Elechi Amadi after death, it is because while alive, he married me well, he was a good husband, he took good care of me. So, I will continue to do my best to keep his memory alive.”
Susan Serekara-Nwikhana & Reliance Ezimora
North Can Live Without VAT Accruals, NEF Boasts …Backs Wike, Southern Govs On Fiscal Federalism, Restructuring
The Northern Elders Forum (NEF) has boasted that the North was a rich region, and can survive on its resources without the “billions” accruing to Southern states.
The NEF Director of Publicity and Advocacy, Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, made this known, yesterday, when he featured on Arise TV’s ‘The Morning Show’ breakfast programme.
He was reacting to the tussle between states and the Federal Government on the collection of Value Added Tax (VAT).
VAT is a consumption tax paid when goods are purchased and services are rendered, and charged at a rate of 7.5 per cent.
Although Rivers and Lagos states have started the process of collecting VAT within their territories, the Court of Appeal, in a ruling on September 10, ordered that status quo be maintained pending the determination of an appeal filed by the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) against the judgment of the Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt.
Apart from Lagos and Rivers states, Ogun State has also started the process of passing a bill on VAT in its House of Assembly.
At the Southern Governors’ Forum meeting in Enugu, last Thursday, the 17 governors insisted that they have the constitutional mandate to collect VAT, and vowed to ensure that the rule of law prevails in the matter.
While some northern governors like Aminu Masari (Katsina), Yahaya Bello (Kogi), amongst others, had kicked against the move, the 17 Southern Governors led by Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) had unanimously supported the position that “the collection of VAT falls within the powers of the states.”
Speaking, yesterday, during the television programme, Baba-Ahmed said, “I will advise that we wait to hear what the court says. However, even the fact that it has become an issue suggests that we really do need to address the fundamentals and the manner in which the federation works.
“We have always supported restructuring. We have always asked that a major and genuine shift initiative either by groups or the National Assembly so that matters like this be addressed properly.
“If we don’t do that now, then, we should get a leader that would do that in 2023. This administration appears not to understand the importance of restructuring; we do in the North, we recognise the fact that we need to change the manner in which we generate wealth and allocate (it).
“The thing is: the North wants restructuring; the North wants fiscal federalism. We are a rich region, and we can live on what we have, even if we don’t have the billions that accrue to others states. Our poverty is not a kind of problem that we would break this country over.”
According to him, the VAT war is a wake-up call to northern governors who need to recognise the fact that VAT or no VAT, they need to develop their resources and develop the human capital of the North.
The NEF spokesman added, “North, you said you have many people but you are under-developing your own people – the biggest liability of the North is that we have a huge population that is under-developed. You need to develop the human capital that you have.
“We need leaders; the current governors don’t recognise this. Otherwise, they won’t be involved in this argument; allow the court to decide.
“But for goodness sake, (they should) begin to think — what else can we do if the court decides now that Rivers State is right, Lagos State is right, and the Southern states are right, and they won’t be getting all these billions coming in from VAT? What happens?”
Baba-Ahmed said the Northern governors at this stage should not be sleeping, noting that the North is “sitting on wealth, we have massive resources in this country, we have to fight insecurity first, and the Federal Government has to help us, we need to clear the bushes, the forests and all the criminals that are there, and we need to go back to farming.
“Agriculture is a major asset; we have land, we have water, we have livestock, we have minerals that are literally begging to be picked from the ground but our governors are too focused on the pittance that they are getting. This is wrong”, he argued.
Boxing: Joshua Facing Toughest Test In Usyk?
Boxing champion, Anthony Joshua could face his toughest test yet when he fights Oleksandr Usyk in London on Saturday, says ex-world champion George Groves.
Joshua, 31, puts his WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO world heavyweight titles on the line against Usyk, a former undisputed cruiserweight world champion.
The 34-year-old Ukrainian has won all 18 professional fights, beating Tony Bellew and Derek Chisora on that run.
“Technically, Usyk is brilliant,” said Groves . “He showed that in unifying the cruiserweight division in great fights and I believe he could be Joshua’s toughest test to date. This is the first fight when I wouldn’t be surprised if Joshua got beaten.
“Joshua has fought [Wladimir] Klitschko and been in with Joseph Parker and also been beaten [by Andy Ruiz] and the only question mark for Usyk Is he big enough to compete with AJ?
“If Usyk keeps a high pace and makes Joshua miss with a lot of shots, that will work to Usyk’s advantage as he has probably got a better engine.
“Joshua is a phenomenal athlete with tremendous punching power and strength but has a tendency to tire out if the pace is uncomfortable for him.”
A crowd of more than 60,000 is expected and it will be the largest attendance Joshua has fought in front of since his win over Alexander Povetkin with 80,000 at Wembley Stadium in September, 2018.
Since then, Joshua has lost to Ruiz in New York before winning the rematch in Saudi Arabia and gained a ninth-round victory over Bulgaria’s Kubrat Pulev at Wembley Arena last December, with only 1,000 fans attending because of Coronavirus restrictions.
Both Joshua and Usyk won gold medals at the 2012 London Olympics, at super-heavyweight and heavyweight respectively, with the Briton going on to win 24 of his 25 professional fights, including 22 inside the distance.
Meanwhile, Dillian Whyte, who lost to Joshua in 2015 and is pushing for a rematch with him or a shot at WBC champion, Tyson Fury, believes the key to beating Usyk on Saturday is to adopt an attacking strategy.
“I think it’s a great fight and Joshua will stop him in the first six or seven rounds,” Whyte told Tidesports source.
“Usyk will start fast and Joshua should be cagey as Usyk is a bit lighter. Joshua can sometimes lack confidence but hopefully he goes back to the old him, starts pressing, being the bigger, stronger guy and gets the job done early.
“If Joshua sets the pace, he can get an early knockout and if he is strong, confident and walks him down, then I don’t see Usyk’s punches troubling Joshua.”
Groves, who held the WBA Super-Middleweight belt in 2017 and 2018, added: “If I was Joshua, I would take control of the ring and try to dominate and bully off the front foot.
“Usyk will want to be off the back foot for the first couple of rounds, then try to pepper Joshua.
“If I was in the Joshua camp, I would say: You want to keep this guy in his box. You don’t want Usyk having any confidence, so hit him hard and early.
“In the first three rounds, you want to land something big on him.”
Promoter Eddie Hearn also suggested Joshua could get an early victory.
Hearn said: “I’m always nervous for an Anthony Joshua fight, especially when you’re fighting someone that really believes he is going to win”.
2022 AFCON: ‘Cameroon On Track’
The Confederation of African Football (CAF) President, Patrice Motsepe, has said that Cameroon is “on track” to successfully host the Africa Cup of Nations early next year after visiting Olembe Stadium in Yaounde last weekend.
The venue will host the opening match and final of the AFCON in January and February of 2022.
A CAF delegation, including President Motsepe and General Secretary, Veron Mosengo-Omba, were joined by Cameroon’s Sports Minister, Professor Narcisse Mouelle Kombi in inspecting progress made at the Olembe Stadium and various other facilities in the capital city.
“I’m very satisfied with the briefing I got and what I saw. I saw the Olembe Stadium and it is world class; we should all be proud as people of Cameroon and as Africans,” said Motsepe, as quoted by CAF’s website.
“We must applaud Cameroon [for] building such infrastructure. In partnership with the Government, the Minister of Sports, LOC, FECAFOOT President and CAF administration under Veron [Mosengo-Omba], I’m certain that in January next year, the rest of the world will be impressed. I’m very satisfied with what I have seen. We are on track.”
Motsepe continued: “The quality of football that will be played here will once again show the world that Africa has the quality to one day win the FIFA World Cup, that is the ultimate goal. The AFCON is special and I think it is important for us to set the tone in Cameroon.”
Mosengo-Omba also heaped praises on Olembe Stadium: “The infrastructure and architecture of the stadium is world class and can be compared to many other famous stadiums globally. In Cameroon, we have six beautiful match venues. Our job now is to ensure that we are ready with everything else.”
- News3 days ago
Shell Recommits To Research, Dev In Nigeria
- Sports3 days ago
Championship: Muaythai Federation Appeals For Support
- Sports3 days ago
Ogunsakin, Mubarak Hit Finals At Sapetro Futures Tennis
- Sports3 days ago
Infantino Reveals How Nigeria Can Host FIFA Competitions
- Sports3 days ago
Why NFF Must Offset Rohr’s Salaries, Bonuses – Aikhomogbe
- Sports3 days ago
Udi Wants Ex-S’Eagles To Coach NPFL Teams
- Sports3 days ago
Rohr Shuns Serie A Goal Machine
- Sports3 days ago
Coordinator Okays Youth Basketball Festival