By Nnamdi Ojiego

A TV presenter, Sulaiman Aledeh, has berated a Nigerian writer, Akwaeke Emezi, for alleged unfriendly comments against renowned author, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. 

Emezi had consistently attacked Chimamanda on social media for years  over comments she made in an interview with Channels 4 in 2017.

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The matter has also generated international interest with the Guardian of London and New York Times writing on it. However speaking on the issue, Aledeh said: “In recent months, I’ve had more intellectual conversations with my friends on WhatsApp because we hold those opinions and can judiciously explain what we mean without being ‘cut’ by the waiting teeth-sharp verbal incursions of people who have no ideas of who we are”. 

“To see Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie express the same views is somewhat relieving, but her revelations are disturbing. They are pointers to our gradually buried humanity. To the ease with which people are pushed towards being individualistic in the media, we tag “social”.

“Whether one agrees or disagrees with Adichie, she took that long to reveal the level and extent of emotional volatility expressed towards her from people who once sought favours is a sign of patient maturity. She took her time. And I am sure she asked herself the questions one only asks in a state of regret. “What have I done wrongly?”

“To bring people under one’s wing comes with sacrifice. The sacrifice, I’ve heard, can be excruciating at times. It is even more dangerous when you have little or no idea of who they are. Asking if she wants her name removed from “acknowledgements” left me boiling”. 

“The fact that one of them, a Nigerian writer, Akwaeke Emezi, has said that people should attack Chimamanda Adichie with machetes, and also set off others to say that the recent sudden loss of Adichie’s parents within months of each other was a deserved punishment is a further sign of this dehumanisation.” Aledeh wrote 

“These statements are abominations. Nothing justifies them. Adichie suffered a devastating tragedy. Inciting people to attack her or anyone for that matter- with machetes is barbaric even if they claim it was not meant to be literal”. 


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