For the first time in 26 years, the Federal University ofAgriculture, Abeokuta successfully hosted a LITERARY WEEK. The program was a success through the unrelenting efforts of the three literature-oriented groups in the science and management-inclined University: Just-A-Poet, FUNAAB Theatre Troupe, Top-Notch Writers Organization and other individuals.

The week-long program which commenced on Monday, July 21, 2014 and was rounded off on Friday July 25, 2014 was designed to encourage students with undying interest in literature, creating a platform for all and sundry to exhibit their recessive talents of prose, poetry and drama.

As part of the event, Talkshop sessions were held at Julius Amioba Okojie Hall 2 (JAO 2). The TalkShop, which began by 1:00pm on Wednesday, 23 July 2014 had Ify Onyegbule, the station manager of Rockcity 101.9 FM and author of 'Not Between my Legs' engage students of the University and other literary inclined individuals across the state, as she spoke on the topic: 'Holding your Audience'. In her address, she stressed that young people should create a platform to air their informed views especially through different social media platforms- Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. She also encouraged students to live a life of purpose and develop a PDP - an abbreviation for what she termed 'Personal Development Plan'.

While interacting with participants on 'The Aesthetics of Poetry', the winner of the $100,000 NLNG Prize for Literature (2013) and author of the anthology, 'The Sahara Testament', Barrister Tade Ipadeola highlighted inter-alia the importance of the presence of truth, power, simplicity - which he refers as the height of sophistication - rhetorical flush and right diction in every poetic piece. As remarked by one of the participants, 'he was so practical in all he said that we all rightly understood'.

Tobi Joseph, a presenter on Rockcity FM lamented the decline in the reading culture of present day Nigerian students and encouraged students to read widely and brand themselves enviably anywhere they find themselves. 

The event was spiced by a spoken word performance from one of Nigeria's outstanding poets - Enigmatic Olumide Bisiriyu - as he thrilled the students with elegance and raptly eloquent delivery of his poem titled 'Words'. This performance was the talk of the show even after the event.

Evidently, the eager thirst for literary appreciation and knowledge by young participants were well satisfied at the event, as one of Nigeria's youngest published author - Aanu Damola Morenikeji gave a charge to all present on personal growth, development and empathy. Damola, who wrote his first book titled 'Spare the Rod and Spoil the Child' at age nine, noted that creativity is impeeded in the absence of freedom and admonished that in the interest of education and national development, thoughts and actions should be targeted at bringing back the over 200 girls abducted in Chibok, a hundred days earlier.

The FUNAAB Theatre Troupe was on top of their game as they presented a short but very meaningful presentation, in which they explained the implications of losing track on  cultural heritage and values by young people.

The grand finale of the event held on Friday, 25th July 2014 was an attestation to the hard-earned belief that talent abounds within the country, as several young people graced the the stage, delightedly rocked the microphone and entertained the audience with the amazing presentations of poetry, prose, rap, dance, spoken words and drama. Some of those who performed were; Ajibola Tolase, Olatunji Tolulope, Omolara, Tosin Agelese, Adebote Oluwaseyifunmi, Adeyemi Agarau, Bada Amoo, Abdul Olamilekan, Adeola Olalekan, Adeniyi Ebenezer, Ogunwole Abdulazeez and a host of others.

The week, dedicated to the appreciation and celebration of literature came to a close with the recognition of individuals who had contributed to literary development. Among the awardees was Israel Ajons, author of 'A Heart that Bleeds', who came all the way from Makurdi having being recognised for his commitment and contributions to Nigerian literary scene. Other awardees were Barrister Tade Ipadeola, Ify Onyegbule, Aanu Damola Morenikeji, Olumide Bisiriyu, Roland Ndu-Akpe, Mr. Bolaji Amusan and Tobi Joseph.

Written by:- Adebote Oluwaseyifunmi

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