By Biodun Busari
A renowned Ghanaian author, playwright and feminist, Ama Ata Aidoo has died at the age of 81.
Aidoo’s family disclosed that she died after a brief illness in the early hours of Wednesday, according to GhanaWeb.
She lived as one of Africa’s most celebrated literary icons with some of her popular works like The Dilemma of a Ghost, Our Sister Killjoy and Changes receiving recognitions and awards.
She opposed what she described as a “Western perception that the African female is a downtrodden wretch”.
Aidoo was a university professor and served as Ghana’s education minister in the early 1980s.
In a statement, her family said, “Our beloved relative and writer” passed away after a short illness, requesting privacy to allow them to grieve.
Aidoo won many literary awards including the 1992 Commonwealth Writers Prize for Changes, a love story about a statistician who divorces her first husband and enters into a polygamist marriage.
Her work, including plays like Anowa, have been read in schools across West Africa, along with works of other greats like Wole Soyinka and Chinua Achebe.