Wednesday, 16 June 2010


Nigerian Breweries Plc and African Artists’ Foundation present the third edition of the annual National Arts Competition in partnership with Dana air (official local airline of the competition), Goethe Institut, Society for Nigerian artists, Bogobiri House and Transcorp Hilton Abuja.

To commemorate Nigeria’s Golden jubilee, the theme of this year’s competition is:
“Chronicles of a Great Nation at 50”

Participating artists are required to interpret their vision of Nigeria at 50 through various art media.

There are fantastic cash prizes to be won in this competition:
3rd prize – N500, 000.00
2nd prize – N1, 000, 000.00
1st prize – N1, 500, 000.00

ALL VISUAL ART GENRES are welcome, and the competition is open to all budding and emerging artists.
Finalists in the competition will be selected to be part of an all expenses paid art workshop.

*Video Art *Multimedia *Painting *Sculpture *Installation *Photography *New Media

Participation is limited to ONE entry per artist, however artists may enter the competition in more than one genre, in which case artists may send in ONE entry per genre.

*For entries in Photography, please send an image that is representative of a complete body of work.
*For entries in Video, please send in clips not exceeding 3 minutes in length.
**Please note that artists who send in more than one image per genre or more than one entry under different pseudonyms will be automatically disqualified**

To submit an entry, please send an image of your work to: NIGERIANBREWERIESAAF@GMAIL.COM
Along with your details as follows:
- Official name in FULL - no pseudonyms or nicknames. Please indicate surname.
- Genre of work entered into the competition (Painting, New media, etc)
- Telephone number(s)
- Email address
- Home address
- Current location
- A brief description of your work (Artist Statement)

The deadline for submission is 6pm on the 15th of June 2010.

Please spread the word!

For more information:

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

6-story Jesus statue in Ohio struck by lightning

Story curled from YAHOO NEWS

MONROE, Ohio – A six-story-tall statue of Jesus Christ with his arms raised along a highway was struck by lightning in a thunderstorm Monday night and burned to the ground, police said.

The "King of Kings" statue, one of southwest Ohio's most familiar landmarks, had stood since 2004 at the evangelical Solid Rock Church along Interstate 75 in Monroe, just north of Cincinnati.
The lightning strike set the statue ablaze around 11:15 p.m., Monroe police dispatchers said.

The sculpture, 62 feet tall and 40 feet wide at the base, showed Jesus from the torso up and was nicknamed Touchdown Jesus because of the way the arms were raised, similar to a referee signaling a touchdown. It was made of plastic foam and fiberglass over a steel frame, which is all that remained early Tuesday.

The fire spread from the statue to an adjacent amphitheater but was confined to the attic area, and no one was injured, police Chief Mark Neu said. The fire department would release a monetary damage estimate Tuesday, he said.

Travelers on Interstate 75 often were startled to come upon the huge statue by the roadside, but many said America needs more symbols like it. So many people stopped at the church campus that church officials had to build a walkway to accommodate them.

The 4,000-member, nondenominational church was founded by former horse trader Lawrence Bishop and his wife. Bishop said in 2004 he was trying to help people, not impress them, with the statue. He said his wife proposed the Jesus figure as a beacon of hope and salvation and they spent about $250,000 to finance it.

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

A Call for Entry

Call for Essays/Short Stories and Photographs

For a Publication on:


The Heinrich Böll Stiftung is a German political foundation, affiliated to the Green Party Germany. The Foundation is engaged in civic education worldwide with 28 offices. The Foundation was named after the writer Heinrich Böll (1917-1985) who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature for his novels and short stories in 1972. His courageous and unerring intervention significantly enriched and influenced political culture in Germany. He personifies the values the Foundation now stands for: the defense of freedom, civic courage, tolerance, open debate and the valuation of art and culture as independent spheres of thought and action.

The Conflict Management Program of the Foundation’s Nigeria office emerged as a response to threats at Nigeria’s democratic processes (see As part of the Foundation’s contribution towards addressing the recurrent and protracted conflicts in Nigeria rooted in diversity issues, the proposed publication should underline the positive role the rich diversity of the country can play and explore ways of transforming the current negative social cohesion into a common strive for development.

This call for essays/short stories and photographs on the theme: “Unity in Diversity: Diversity is positive for Nigeria” intends to:

-Encourage future generations of Nigerians to be part of a solution to the recurrent diversity related violent conflicts in Nigeria.

-Explore new ideas/strategies to solve the conflicts through youth-led solutions.

-Provide a platform for citizenship participation in the quest for sustainable peace in Nigeria.

The essays/short stories should concentrate on:

-Telling a true-life story of how the diversity of Nigeria’s people enriched your personal, your families or your friends’ life and explore how the positive aspect of diversity could benefit Nigeria’s social and economic development

-Drawing conclusions from your own positive experiences to develop new ideas/strategies for integrating the positive role of diversity into the social and political structures

- Considering the role of future generations of Nigerians to ensure peace is sustained in the country

The photographs should

-Concentrate on the theme “Diversity is Positive for Nigeria” and include a brief description of how the photograph depicts the theme

Send entries to:

Word Count: Not more than 3000words. Quotes and references must be clearly marked as such and properly cited at the end of the text

Format: Texts are accepted in the following formats: word or pdf, they must be in English language

Age Limit: 18years to 35years

Deadline for submission: 31st August 2010

Notification: Selected entries will be notified before 9th October 2010

Further Information:

Heinrich Böll Stiftung
16a, Oladipo Diya Street
2nd Avenue Extension
Roselyn (at)

A jury of Nigerian writers, conflict experts and photographers will select the best entries which will be posted onto the Foundation’s website and published as a book. There will be an official presentation ceremony (date to be communicated) followed by a short expert roundtable discussion. Note: We reserve the right to modify the format and content of the submissions for publication purposes.


-A 5-day trip to Berlin / Germany to participate in an arts festival and educational event organized by the Foundations head-office for the overall best entry!

-The selected essays/short stories will be rewarded with N 25 per word up to a maximum of 3000 words.

-The selected photographs will be rewarded with N 30,000each

OLA JOSEPH, Nigerian author: “Diversity is not about how we differ. It is about embracing one another’s uniqueness”.

TONI KAN, award winning writer: “I drew inspiration, anecdotes and ideas from the diverse nature of my country, Nigeria. My thesis was that by focusing so much on what divides us, we fail to see the ties that bind. The world we live is no longer delineated by clear cut boundaries. We have become a true global village and it is more evident in Nigeria where travel, the imperatives of work and survival as well as inter-tribal marriages has blurred the lines of division.”

PROF. ALBERT OLAWALE ISAAC, internationally renowned conflict expert from the University of Ibadan defines diversity as “human differences in terms of race, ethnicity, religion, ideology or social class. It calls attention to the fact that human beings are not born the same and even when they are, some environmental factors make them to have diverse social, economic and political orientations. However, diversity is like a budding flower with many beautiful petals that complement each other in adding beauty to the environment. It is therefore an asset to any nation. For example, diversity makes it possible for Nigeria to be one of the most culturally significant nations in the world. This could be seen in the variety of languages, food, dresses, songs, festivals and cultural sites in the country”.

ADE BANTU, Musician: “As a Nigerian-German, I consciously embrace the best of the world and my continent. Diversity is my reality, yes, it is challenging and demanding, at times, but I have learned that as long as I am open, curious and willing to go extra miles, there is so much of ‘me’ to be discovered in the alleged ‘others’.”

ROSELYN ONYEGBULA, HBS Program Manager, Conflict Management: “Diversity is like a human being, each with a distinct finger print but with other common features that make us all human. Nigeria is a very diverse nation, to draw strength from our diversity we need to focus on our commonalities and not differences, to move the country forward.”

Thursday, 3 June 2010

AMP – House of Discord – Season ONE

Few days ago, I was listening to a TV report on a particularly new group for Nigerian film producers, ANCOP - Association of Nollywood Core Producers, and its members condemned the opperations of AGN, saying that it's an association of hooligans and unserious minded people in the Nigerian film industry. This story was written last year, I have decided to publish it here since my last post was on cinema. You can see the contrast in the reality of the indsutry. 

As soon as I came down from a bike at the entrance gate of NCAC Artistes Village, an extension of National Theatre, I saw pioneer actors and actresses of Nollywood leant upon jeeps parked serially along in the premises. At first number of jeeps parked and the crowd of artistes surprised me, since the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) is no more in the premises. But a colleague told me that the presence of the artistes in the premises is nothing than an election for new executives of the Association of Movie Producers (AMP).

They were said to have moved from the Film Cooperation, which is not quite at a distance from the village to continue their electoral process, when the office closed for the day.

As my mission at the village is never to participate in the election neither am I an observer, I decided to mind my business. Well, I had scheduled a meeting with an art administrator earlier in the day at the Village, and as soon as I find my way in, I saw the fellow sipping a brand of beer from a glass-cup at the mini-bar behind the Little Theatre. Adjacent to the mini-bar is an open-ground where AGN normally audition for films some two years before they moved to their new office in Surulere, and there were actors and actresses in twos, threes and fours, having cheerful discussions with themselves. While some five of them sat round a table with seemingly documents for the election on the table. Having a full understanding of this kind of arrangement, I concluded that this must be the electoral board representative.

Having seated beside my colleague, the operations of the electoral board and the electorates for the AMP election were vivid from the mini-bar.

Some minutes after I had finished my meeting with the colleague of mine that we started noticing a different look on the faces of a while ago cheerful artistes in the premises. Out of my curiosity, I stood up; moved closer to the artistes and on getting into there midst I realized that there is bottled anger in some of them. Somebody asked, “why would they disqualify Lilian Amah?” behind me. I quickly looked towards that direction and I saw a round belly fellow who was later identified as Tony, on his feet, Paul Obazele and Lilian Amah, glued to their sit and some other unknown (to me) artistes around them. “Whatever happens you are still the president,” Tony said, referring to Paul Obazele, the current National President of the association.

Now the mood has changed completely and the unease pacing and whispering in the premises send a signal, which was later to be understood by me rashly. Suddenly, Paul Obazele pulled himself up from the seat and went towards the entrance of the village with his face laced with anger. He returned not quite long, alone, and Tony went to the electoral board representatives to challenge them. There were seconds of argument between him and the board before he started screaming “everybody come and cross check your name now…this list is doctored,” the list which was later to be recognized as the accreditation was protected by the electoral representatives from been touched. And artistes started approaching the table one by one. Within a twinkling, a crowd surrounded the table, argument ensued, the table got turned upside down by Femi Ogedenge, who coarsely ran towards the mini-bar, he got hold of a bottle and brook it. Approaching the table again with a sharpen edge of bottle, Tony, Fred Amata, Franca Brown, and some other artistes blocked his way with soothing words. But then, season one of the “AMP: house of discord” had began.

“Where is Ifeanyi Ikpoenyin running to, he started this, he should stay” Paul Obazele said pointing his finger at a jeep zooming off the premises. Few minutes later Madu Chikwendu, President Producers Guild, movie producer, director and organiser of the Lagos International Film Festival (LIFF) arrived with two armed “mo-police,” and started shouting, “where are those who say this election will not hold…where is Femi Ogedenge,” but the Madu could finish pronouncing the name, the fierce producer charged at him and a serious uproar brook. The policemen couldn’t arrest anybody realizing that they are artistes. They couldn’t stop the fight that ensued neither. The scene turned to two fighting scenario: Femi against Madu, Sosa furiously slapped Dickson Iroegbu, also threw pouches at Madu intermittently, Tony threw a wrecked chair at Madu. All the while, I peeped from behind Tope Babayemi’s jeep parked at a corner. The ace art and culture manager, Tope Babeyemi, is busy settling the dispute but was unsuccessful despite his continuous shout “don’t spoil this place! Sosa stop this shit!”

Although, the lyrics of Asa’s song “Fire on the Mountain” reverberated in my head continually as the show went on, but “if I run away who will report this discouraging attitude of the men who control our presently world acknowledged industry”–Nollywood–was a question that beamed through my mind. As I pulled down the thought of running for my dear life, similar lyrics of a song by Daddy Showkey echoed in my heart: “fire dey bone wall no run,” I smiled and concentrate more on the show.

Now seated in the mini-bar, Femi Ogedenge, Sosa, and other artistes chanted aloud: “Paul is the best!” twice. As I tried to catch a glimpse of this scene from where I was hiding, some heavily armed “mobile-police” came down from a vehicle, running after everybody and shooting aside at the same time, unfolded another scene. The whole place scattered. Nobody told me to run for my dear life at this point in time, because I realized that Ben Johnson was just opportune to be a track-lane athlete, if he is to be a street runner, really with my moves ahead of the policemen on the August 5th, 2009, I would outran him.

Ode Dance studio took hostage of many of us–the onlookers. We were in the studio for close to thirty minutes until one of us called somebody with her moble phone, she was told that the policemen left.  awhile ago. Indeed, the artistes had equally gone with the policemen too by the time we were out from the studio.

Well, this exhibition of frivolity is no big deal as far as I’m concern. It is just a typical of Nigerian leaders in all spheres. They usually lost all sense of reasoning when post and money is involve. The culture of throwing chairs in both the house of Reps and the house Senate is eminent with our political leaders. But theatre is a scared venue and these warring producers of our film industry, Nollywood, should know better.