Sahara Winner

tadeThe race for the 2013 edition of the prestigious Nigeria Prize for Literature, sponsored by the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG), which kicked off February, 2013, came to a positive conclusion Wednesday with The Sahara Testament authored by Tade Ipadeola, emerging winner.

The Ibadan based legal practitioner and poet,Tade Ipadeola who was born in 1970 has published three volumes of poetry-A Time of Signs (2000) and The Rain Fardel (2005). His short stories and essays have also been published in diverse media. In 2009, he won the Delphic Laurel in Poetry with his poem “Songbird” in Jeju, South Korea.

His third volume of poetry which is the Award winning collection of poetry, The Sahara Testaments-a sequence of 1000 quatrains on the nuances of the Sahara, is his latest work. The book was published by Hornbill House of the Arts, Lagos.

The Panel of Judges led by its Chairman, Prof. Romanus Egudu adjudged The Sahara Testament the winning entry for the biggest literary prize in Africa which comes with $100,000 cash prize because “it is a remarkable epic covering the terrain and people of Africa from the very dawn of creation, through the present, to the future.

The text it was explained, “uses the Sahara as a metonymy for problems of Africa and indeed, the whole of humanity. It also contains potent rhetoric and satire on topical issues and personalities, ranging from Africa’s blood diamonds and inflation in Nigeria…” It was also noted that “Ipadeola’s use of poetic language demonstrates a striking marriage of thought and verbal artistry expressed in the blending of sound and sense.”

Ipadeola’s work beat two other stiff contenders who made the final three; Ogochukwu Promise and Chidi Amu Nnadi to clinch the Prize.

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