By Prisca Sam-Duru
The Advisory Board for The Nigeria Prize for Literature has released the longlist of 11 drawn from 287 books for the 2022 edition of the prize.
The literature prize is sponsored by Nigeria LNG Limited (NLNG) with a cash award of $100,000.
This year’s edition, which is focused on Poetry, has on the longlist ‘Augusta’s Poodle’ by Ogaga Ifowodo; ‘Coming Undone As Stitches Tighten’ by Iquo DianaAbasi; ‘Dispossessed’ by James Eze Ife; ‘Testament’ by Olusegun Adekoya; and ‘Memory and the Call of Waters’ by S. Su’eddie Agema.
Others are ‘Nomad’ by Romeo Oriogun; ‘The Lilt of The Rebel’ by Obari Gomba; ‘The Love Canticles’ by Chijioke Amu Nnadi; ‘Wanderer Cantos’ by Remi Raji; ‘Yawns and Belches’ by Joe Ushie; and ‘Your Crib, My Qibla’ by Saddiq Dzukogi.
The list was presented to the Advisory Board by the Chairman, Panel of Judges for this year’s prize, Sule Emmanuel Egya, a professor of African Literature and Cultural Studies at Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, Lapai, Niger State.
Other judges include; Toyin Adewale-Gabriel and Dike Chukwumerije. Adewale-Gabriel is a Poet and fiction writer, while Dike Chukwumerije is a Spoken Word and Performance Poet and an award-winning author.
The judges described the longlist of eleven as the best of contemporary Nigerian poetry, rich in experimentation with language, style and theme.
Receiving the list on behalf of the Board, the Chairman, Professor Akachi Adimora- Ezeigbo, said the quality of work in the list shows that a lot of scrutiny and work went into selecting deserving poets who have distinguished themselves by the quality of their submissions.
The judges will also continue adjudication on the 87 entries for The Nigeria Prize for Literary Criticism, which runs concurrently with The Nigeria Prize for Literature and carries a monetary value of N1 million.
The Nigeria Prize for Literature rotates yearly amongst four literary categories — prose fiction, poetry, drama, and children’s literature.
A shortlist of three is expected in September 2022 while a winner, if any, will be announced by the Advisory Board in October.