‘Reading for Development’, the theme for Creative Alliance Book Club that held in Benin City a fortnight ago created some excitement amongst students that had the privilege to attend. The event was held at St Maria Goretti Grammar School, Benin City. The event, which was held at the school hall, had students from other schools joining in the fun.
The event was organised in conjunction with Creative Alliance, organisers of the mouth-watering grassroots competition, Literary Star Search, the N1 million star prize competition - (visit www.creativeallianceng.com for details on how to apply)
Most importantly, it brought students face to face with writers from within the city to read and talk to them about the necessity for reading works of literature as the best way to develop themselves for future challenges.
Prominent among the writers that read to the students was Prof. Tony Afejuku, international scholar at the Department of English and Literature, University of Benin, Benin City. He is the author numerous poetry collections of poems including A Garden of Moods. Besides reading to the students one of his poems, ‘Warri boy, an elegy’, where he recounted his memory of a lost dear friend, he also admonished the students on the need to always read as a condition for being great writers.
Quite uncharacteristically, author of To Saint Patrick and Fine Boys, Dr. Eghosa Imasuen, read ‘The Generator’, a short story he has read over and over again at various fora. One would have expected him to read from his upcoming work, Fine Boys. It seems Imasuen is not so keen on promoting his forthcoming work, which he said he would enter for The Nigerian Prize for Literature for which entry closes month end.
Nevertheless, it was an electrifying afternoon made moreso when Michael Ipogah read his poetic piece, ‘Words will never be enough’.
Dr. Kola Eke and Dr. Peter Airevba spoke to the students on why they should read. The students themselves were not left out as they read from works of other writers. They also engaged the writers during the question and answer session to provoke a scholarly debate.
In all, it was clear students from Oka Secondary School, Ugioma Secondary School, Idia College and the host school, St. Maria Goretti had a special fun time at the maiden edition of Creative Alliance Book Club event, which had the support of Pepsi soft drink. Date for the next edition will soon be announced, according to organiser, Ipogah.