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New Book On JP Clark Presented At UNILAG

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In conjunction with the Department of English, University of Lagos, the Clark family presented a new book chronicling the life and times of Nigeria’s foremost literary icon, Professor Emeritus, John Pepper Clark, at the Rahaman Adisa Bello Lecture Theatre, last Tuesday, April 18, 2023.

The book titled, “Connecting the Local and the Global Across Literary Genres: Emerging Perspectives on J.P. Clark and His Works”, is edited by Professors Hope Eghagha and Solomon Azumutana, both of the University of Lagos, UNILAG.

Published by Mosuro Publishers (2022), Connecting the Local and the Global Across Literary Genres: Emerging Perspectives on J.P. Clark and His Works features erudite scholars such as Hope Eghagha (UNILAG), Lilly Chimuanya (Covenant University), Olufemi Adeosun (Ekiti State University), Destiny Idegbekwe (University of Africa, Bayelsa), Promise Adiele (Mountain Top University), Omolara Owoeye (Ekiti State University, Ado-Ekiti), Peter Omoko (University of Africa, Toru-Orua, Bayelsa), Rosetta Nnsi (Nigerian Film Institute, Jos) and Solomon Azumurana (UNILAG) as contributors.

READ ALSO: Soyinka, Other Scholars Headline JP Clark’s First Memorial Literary Feast At UNILAG

The seminal material encapsulates fifteen chapters of critical essays on phenomenal works of the legend which include the following: “The Wives’ Revolt”, “Ozidi”, “All for Oil”, “Song of a Goat”, “Casualties”, “Masquerade”, “Streamside Exchange”, “Night Rain” and “Home from Hiroshima”. The 339-page book also features exploratory essays on other prolific writers like Ahmed Yerima and Femi Osofisan whose works are interrogated by Rosetta Nnsi under the subtitle, “Folklore in J. P. Clark’s Masquerade, Femi Osofisan’s Many Colours Make the Thunder King and Ahmed Yerima’s Hard Ground”.

The auspicious occasion chaired by Architect Charles Majoroh was well attended by members of the academia, communication executives, reps of Government College, Ugheli- Clark’s Alma mater and a host of others, including a representative of the Chief Host, Vice Chancellor Prof. Folasade Tolulope Ogunsola who was represented by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Development Services), Prof. Victoria Atsenuwa Ayodele, Dean, Department of English, Prof Funke Adeboye, Prof. Yemi Akinyele, Arts curator and consultant, Moses Ohiomokhare, widow of the late sage, Prof. Ebun Clark, their son, Elaye and daughter, Ema Clark.

The book reviewer, Prof. Patrick Oloko, recalled his last encounter with the late sage, saying: “A year or so before he died, I was with Prof. Clark in his office at the JP Clark Centre. I informed him that Prof Eghagha and I were thinking of introducing courses-in his works, at the post graduate and graduate levels. He gave me that his trademark quisical look and then replied, ‘So, you are still thinking? Well, whatever you want to do, please, do it quickly because I don’t have much time.’ I was expecting a congratulatory pat on the back. You know that typical, but very very meaningful Clarkian arrogance that I have heard so much about. Later on, I reflected on his words again. I told myself that a writer who donated an entire library holding that he had spent his entire life time building to an institution where he and his wife spent their most productive years of a human life circle actually deserves more than mere ‘thinking about’. He deserves action. I’m happy to announce that the undergraduate level course is going the process approval for literature for the English Department. The book being presented today is part of the action being taken.”

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Speaking further on the book project and the persona, Prof. Oloko said: “In my reckoning, it should be an important material for the course. 11 of the 15 chapters of the volume bring new conversations that are centered around specific works of the famous author. Unlike others, I refuse to believe that he wasn’t given much attention. He was very popular and controversial. Any writer who is not controversial is going to be simply shut behind the room and never listened to. J.P. Clark was not the kind of person you could ignore.”

The reviewer explained that the other four chapters point to new directions that follow up the volume’s chart. “The first direction is to give more content to the understanding of Clark through his extra-literary engagements, ” he noted, revealing that Chapter 1 started it admirably, focusing on “the biography of Clark- the controversial one and the authorized one as well as his very definitive memoir, “America, Their America.” The second direction puts Clark’s works in dialogue with his contemporaries and others after his generation. Chapters 7 and 13 have started the conversation, resituating Clark within the universal continuum of theatre practice without sacrificing his humanity and national consciousness. The chart continues brilliantly through the entry to Chapter 4. So, the authors of this volume are collectively kick-starting a project of bringing Clark in a broader view after he joined the ancestral realm.

They remind us that writers attain an enduring immortality when they are no longer alive. Part of the enduring value of this book lies in that very pragmatic word, ’emerging’ which is somewhere in the book’s rather long title.”

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While speaking on behalf of the editors, Prof. Hope Eghagha also went down memory lane, saying: “In 2018, we hosted a conference, the ‘JP Clark Conference’. At the opening ceremony was the Nobel laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka who gave the keynote. At the end of it, Prof. Clark said to me: ‘Hope, we’ve broken the jinx. That was a very good good attempt to host a JP Clark Conference.’ I didn’t know what to do. He was excited. I didn’t know that that was a “good bye conference. The first two flopped for some reasons. So, he was excited. Of course, there was no way we could have known that that was a ‘Good bye conference’ because shortly after he joined his ancestors. Why did we decide to host the conference? We thought that not enough attention had been given to his work. Most of us in my generation were exposed to his works in secondary schools. “Night Rain”, for instance, long before became fashionable for environmentalists to make an issue out of the degradation in the Niger Delta, Clark captured it in his book.

He was one of the first generation of Nigerian, indeed, African writers recognized as literary giants of our time. But, why was it that his works were not given enough attention? Was it that people focused more on his personality than his written works? Last year, with the support of his family, I’ll like to pay tributes to Prof. (Mrs) Ebun Clark who has gone out of her way to keep her husband’s legacy, standing for what he stood for and supported this our first book. We hope that we have documented the first phase of our research.” Moreover, Eghagha pointed out that Prof. Clark had an attitude towards his work as “He used to say: Let the work speak for itself’ and didn’t believe in propaganda. He didn’t believe in courting or being nice to the press.”

 

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Drama As US-based Model Accidentally Uploads ‘Cozy’ Photo With Davido

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A U.S-based model identified as Bonita Maria has caused a stir on social media after inadvertently sharing a ‘cozy’ photo of herself and Nigerian singer, Davido.

The photo which has sent the internet into a frenzy captured the model and Davido in what appeared to be an intimate pose.

The duo could be seen close together in a relaxed, comfortable pose, with Davido’s arm around her.

Despite the photo’s swift retraction, it quickly made rounds across various social media platforms, with netizens speculating on the nature of their relationship.

Although as of press time, representatives of the singer are yet to comment on the trending photo.

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Davido, a prominent figure in the Afrobeats music scene, has been under the public eye for both his musical achievements and personal endeavors.

With numerous awards and accolades to his name, including multiple MTV Africa Music Awards and BET Awards, Davido has established himself as a global ambassador for Afrobeats music.

The singer’s distinctive style, characterized by infectious rhythms and catchy melodies, has earned him a dedicated fan base worldwide.

 

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Nigeria May Adopt Chinese Water Transport System

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Nigerian maritime stakeholders and authorities have concluded plans to understudy the Chinese waterways transport model with a view to perfecting Nigeria’s waterways transportation system.

In a statement, the Head of Maritime Roundtable Breakfast Meeting, MBRBM, Mrs Tosan Edodo-Emore, said that China being the largest country with the largest inland waterways is apt to teach Nigeria on how best to manage and improve water transport system.

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She said that the Consul General of the People’s Republic of China, Madam Yan Yuqing, is expected to share the Chinese experience with the Sino-Nigeria Maritime Relationship and lessons to be learnt from China at the summit scheduled for April 18, 2024.

According to the Edodo-Emore, the Summit themed, “Security and New Technologies in Inland Waterways Transportation”, will have some heads of maritime institutions

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NAFDAC Alerts Nigerians On Banned Soap

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The National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), has drawn Nigerians’ attention to the ban on Dex Luxury Bar Soap (No 6 Mystic Flower), by European Union (EU).

The notification is contained in a public alert with No. 012/2024, signed by NAFDAC Director-General, Prof Mojisola Adeyeye, and issued to newsmen in Abuja on Sunday.

The product does not comply with the cosmetic products regulation; it also contains Butyphenyl Methylpropional (BMHCA), which is prohibited in cosmetic products due to its risk of harming the reproductive system.

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“It also causes harm to the health of unborn children and may cause skin sensitisation.

“It is as a result of the defective nature of the product that the EU banned it.

“The products is not in NAFDAC database; importers, distributors, retailers and consumers are to exercise caution and vigilance within the supply chain,” she said.

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Adeyeye called on marketers and consumers to avoid the importation, distribution, sale and use of the product, saying that product’s authenticity and physical condition must be carefully checked.

She called on members of the public in possession of the product to discontinue sale or use, and submit stock to the nearest NAFDAC office.

The NAFDAC boss advised healthcare professionals and consumers to report any suspicion of adverse reaction or substandard and falsified regulated products to the nearest NAFDAC office on 0800-162-3322 or via email: sf.alert@nafdac.gov.ng.

She also encouraged healthcare professionals and patients to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of the product, to the nearest NAFDAC office.

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