184 entries selected to compete for this year’s edition of the prestigious Nigeria Prize for Literature, sponsored by Nigeria LNG Limited, NLNG, were handed over to the Advisory Board of the prize.
The entries for 2017 edition which focuses on poetry were formally handed over to the Board on Tuesday at a ceremony in Lagos. The hand-over of the entries to the Advisory Board, chaired by Professor Emeritus Ayo Banjo, marked the take-off of the judging process which is expected to climax in October 2017 when a winner will emerge. Other members of the Board include Prof. Jerry Agada, former Minister of State for Education and Professor Emeritus Ben Elugbe, former President of the Nigerian Academy of Letters.
While handing over the entries, NLNG’s General Manager, External Relations, Dr. Kudo Eresia-Eke, disclosed that since the inception of the prize in 2004, it has inspired about 1,630 books of which 533, representing 32 per cent, were submitted in the poetry category.
“The number of entries for the 2017 edition exceeded the 2016 numbers, showing a six percent rise in the number of entries received and increasing interest in one of the biggest literary prize in the world. This has been the trend since 2005.
“We believe that the prize has inspired writers to want to deliberately win the prize. This has led to the proliferation of books and increased the quality of books. The spiralling effect of this is the boost to literacy and education in the country, “ Dr. Eresia said.