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Nigeria’s Chimamanda Adichie receives UN Global Leadership Award1 minute read

Adichie is the youngest African and only Nigerian to have received the award

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Nigeria's Chimamanda Adichie receives UN Global Leadership Award
Photo credit: [Instagram/ Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie]

Multiple-award-winning Nigerian Writer and Feminist, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has been awarded with the prestigious UN Global Leadership Award by the United Nations, making her the youngest African and only Nigerian to have received the award.

Adichie was recognized for her work in Literature – most notably, her talent for using storytelling to connect with people across generations and cultures on issues related to gender, identity, racial inequality as well as for being a leader on the frontlines of global progress.

This landmark achievement comes just after Adichie’s famous novel, “Half of a Yellow Sun” was named in BBC’s 100 Novels that shaped our world.

The 2019 edition of the annual award, tagged; “We the people to honour the founding ideals and vision articulated in the UN Charter” held on the eve of the United Nations 75th anniversary.

Adichie joins the league of notable figures that have received the award in the past, which include former Presidents of America, President Bill Clinton, and Barrack Obama, Oprah Winfrey and former UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan.

Elated Adichie took to her Instagram account to announce the award.

Also honoured at the ceremony were Mary Robinson, Chair of The Elders and former President of Ireland, Gunhild Stordalen, Chair of the Stordalen Foundation and Founder of EAT, UN staff members who have worked on the frontlines of crisis response, amongst others.

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Millions of fans thrilled with Cardi B’s Africa tour

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Cardi B attends the Swisher Sweets Awards Cardi B With The 2019 "Spark Award" at The London West Hollywood in West Hollywood, Calif.(Photo by Billboard: Leon Bennett/FilmMagic)

It was all buzzing in Lagos and Accra during the weekend as Cardi B visited. 

Belcalis Marlenis Almanzar, popularly known as Cardi B was on a 2-nation African tour from Friday 5 December to Sunday 8 December.  She performed in Nigeria on Saturday and in Ghana on Sunday. 

There is no doubt the Grammy-Award winning rapper enjoyed every bit of her time in the 2 West African countries. She kept millions of fans all over the world thrilled with her energetic activities which she regularly updated via her social media posts.

In Nigeria, the 27-year-old’s performance went down on Saturday night at the Livespot Festival, held at the Eko Atlantic City, Lagos.

Performing alongside Cardi B at the festival was Burna Boy, Tiwa Savage, Teni, Patoranking, Joe Boy, Niniola and a host of other Nigerian artistes.

The beautiful rapper dressed in Nigeria’s national colours from hair to toe, to deliver an electrifying performance to the delight of her teeming Nigerian fans. 

She performed some of her hit songs like ‘I like It That’, ‘Girls Like You’, ‘Bodak Yellow’, ‘Money’ among others.

The Chief Creative Director of Livespot36 – the organizers of the festival, Dare Art Alade, while speaking at the largely-attended festival said:

“We know how much love the fans have for Cardi B and this was one of the reasons we chose to give fans a special experience to see the queen of hip-hop live in Lagos. However, we also are aware of the massive appeal of some of our Nigerian music acts. The show will definitely have been incomplete without these music stars, and this is why we all had a great time at Live Spot Festival”.

Cardi B who was quickly nicknamed Chioma B in Nigeria did not just come to Nigeria to perform and leave with her paycheck. She showed massive love for the country and her beautiful people. She visited motherless babies’ home with several gifts.  

She also had a swell time clubbing in some of the famous clubs in Lagos. At one of the clubs, she reportedly splashed a whooping 3 million naira. 

Nigerians do not waste time in returning any love shown to them. The comely rapper genuinely showed her love for Africa and this easily gained her endearment from millions.

Cardi B left Nigeria on Sunday to Ghana where she was received with equal love and energy. 

However, some Ghanian celebrities had earlier complained that they were snubbed by Cardi B when they came to her hotel to have a ‘Meet & Greet’ with her and she did not show up but she later cleared the air on what happened, saying she was not informed about the meeting and immediately promised to meet the guest celebrities.

She is expected to return to the United States on Monday.

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Nobel winner Mahfouz lives on in Cairo’s alleyways

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Nobel winner Mahfouz lives on in Cairo's alleyways
A mural depicting Egyptian novelist and nobel prize winner Naguib Mahfouz is pictured behind the al-Azhar mosque in downtown Cairo on November 26, 2019. (Photo by Khaled DESOUKI / AFP)

The legacy of Islamic Cairo’s most famous son Naguib Mahfouz lives on in its winding lanes more than three decades after he became the only Arab to win the Nobel Prize for Literature.

A mosaic of the bespectacled author overlooks a market teeming with children on bikes, waiters balancing trays of hot drinks and shoppers haggling with hawkers over the price of meat.

It could be a scene straight out of a typical Mahfouz novel focusing on the minutes of life in the Egyptian capital, with its satirically political overtones and timeless characters.

Nobel winner Mahfouz lives on in Cairo's alleyways
Portrait of Naguib Mahfouz (1911-2006) 1992 ©Gattoni/Leemage

After years in the making, a museum in the writer’s honour opened in July this year.

A new translation of previously unpublished Mahfouz work is also in print, underscoring 13 years after his death the mark he made both on world literature and on Egyptians themselves.

In November, young writer Ahmed Mourad sparked controversy in Egypt when he suggested that the quality of Mahfouz’s work needed to be adapted to make it more contemporary.

The backlash at this tarnishing of the great man’s reputation forced Mourad to go on the popular television talk show circuit to clarify his comments.

Mahfouz is considered to be the father of the modern Arabic novel: he broadened its literary range by pushing through sacred red lines including religious taboos.

Nobel winner Mahfouz lives on in Cairo's alleyways
A mural depicting Egyptian novelist and nobel prize winner Naguib Mahfouz is pictured behind the al-Azhar mosque in downtown Cairo on November 26, 2019. (Photo by Khaled DESOUKI / AFP)

And he was nearly killed for doing so. In 1994, a knifeman stabbed him in the neck in an assassination attempt. 

The attacker had been acting on a fatwa or religious edict issued by radical Egyptian-American imam Omar Abdel-Rahman, denouncing what he deemed to be the prodigious author’s blasphemous prose.

About Cairo with love –

Mahfouz’s daughter Om Kalthoum said he was so deeply enmeshed in the chaotic energy of Cairo that the city itself was a major character in his work.

The writer’s routine included walks along the corniche by the Nile to his favourite cafes near Tahrir Square, epicentre of the 2011 revolution, and to cultural salons.

“He wrote about Cairo with true love. He described it in granular detail. Even if he criticised it, it was still full of love,” she told the media.

She and her sister accepted their father’s 1988 Nobel Prize on his behalf because of his inability to travel due to his deteriorating eyesight.

Om Kalthoum said: “I remember sometimes we used to go to Al-Hussein (the area around the Al-Hussein mosque in the heart of Islamic Cairo) and we’d sit in the cafe bearing his name,” the Naguib Mahfouz Cafe.

“He showed us Midaq Alley — it was pretty much the size of a small room — and he would tell us great stories about his days as a schoolchild,” she recalled.

‘Midaq Alley’ was one of his most widely read books globally and was adapted into a 1995 film starring Salma Hayek.

The site of the museum dedicated to him is in a beautifully restored Ottoman guesthouse in Islamic Cairo dating to 1774 and was chosen because he spent his early years there.

Nobel winner Mahfouz lives on in Cairo's alleyways
A picture taken on November 7, 2019 shows the nobel prize certificate of Egyptian novelist Naguib Mahfouz displayed at his museum at al-Azhar district in the heart of the capital Cairo. (Photo by Khaled DESOUKI / AFP)

In the Al-Gamaleya neighbourhood the budding writer was surrounded by 10th century walls and a myriad of hiding spots for curious kids.

Om Kalthoum noted that being raised there left an indelible mark on her father’s imagination.

Mahfouz’s precious belongings including his mahogany desk, honours such as his Nobel certificate and even his last pack of cigarettes are among the items displayed in an exhibition that covers three floors. 

A universal writer –

Roger Allen, emeritus professor at Penn University in the United States and a prolific translator of Arab writers but especially Mahfouz, told reporters the author was monumental “in the development of Egyptian fiction”.

His writings delved into “ancient Egypt, Sufism, and politics”, Allen said.

“You get glimpses of his many interests. He was working on multiple tracks throughout his career.”

Allen translated a collection of his writings into English this year in a work entitled ‘The Quarter’.

The collection “reflects what a Cairene quarter looks like” — much like where the museum dedicated to him is located now.

It is also “a heavily symbolic entity associated with humanity”, Allen added.

“His works take on universal themes that show how to organise society and how it can be disrupted by forces,” he said.

The new collection is based on a pile of papers that his daughter found years after his death. It was organised and originally published in Arabic by Mohammed Shoair, an editor with the culture journal Akhbar Al-Adab.

Shoair said that “in the years before winning the Nobel, he lost his eyesight so his relationship with reality was almost severed. Writing for him became an obsession.”

Shoair has been archiving Mahfouz’s papers with Om Kalthoum’s help for a multi-volume biography.

He talked about Mahfouz’s pioneering role in revolutionising the Arab novel to the extent that many Arab authors now follow in his footsteps.

Alaa al-Aswany from Egypt, Ahmed Saadawi from Iraq and Algeria’s Ahlam Mosteghanemi have all found a global readership with books that have won international awards.

“The main idea behind his work since the 80s was returning to his childhood… his beginnings and the alley,” Shoair said of Mahfouz.

“He was talking about his personal life in a way, but through the memories of the past”.

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Complete list of the Future Awards Africa winners

Held at the Federal Palace Hotel, Lagos, Nigeria, the award ceremony was hosted by Falz and actress Toni Tones

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Complete list of the Future Awards Africa winners
Photo credit: https://thefutureafrica.com/

The 2019 Future Awards Africa took place at the Federal Palace Hotel, Lagos, Nigeria on Sunday, November 24, 2019.

The award recognizes the achievement of young Nigerian talents, innovators, entrepreneurs, and community advocates doing great in their various fields.

As usual, the annual award did not fall short of expectations. This year’s edition was themed “Nigeria’s New Tribe”. It was hosted by hip hop artist and rapper, Falz and actress Toni Tones.

Here is the complete list of the winners:

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR ACTING

Timini Egbuson (32) – Winner

Bimbo Ademoye (28)

Bandele ‘Baaj’ Adebule (30)

Sharon Ooja (28)

Fatima Washa Abdullahi (26)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR MUSIC 

Teniola Apata (26)

Damini Ebunoluwa ‘Burna Boy’ Ogulu (28) –  Winner

Folarin ‘Falz’ Falana

John ‘Johny Drill’ Ighodalo (29) 

Sadiq ‘Wurld’ Onifade (32)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR AGRICULTURE

Emmanuel Maduka (24)

Chiamaka Ndukwu Theresa and Kenneth Okonkwo (25/25)

Uka Eje (29) – Winner

Divine-Love Akam (24)

Rotimi Olawale (29)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR ADVOCACY

Hamzat Lawal (32) – Winner

Bright Jaja (29)

Uchechi ‘Ucy’ Rochas (27)

Ifedayo Durosinmi-Etti (30)

Funke Adeoye (27)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR ARTS (VISUAL & APPLIED)

Arinze Stanley (26)

Ken Nwadiogbu (25) – Winner

Dipo Doherty (28)

Olarinde Olayemi Ayanfeoluwa (22)

Olabanke Subair (28)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR COMMUNITY ACTION

Abdulazeez Kaltumi (27)

Yetunde Fadeyi (27)

Kelechukwu Nwachukwu Lucky (25)

Tony Joy (27)

Akpobi Elvis (31)

Isaac Success Omoyele (28) – Winner

Stephen Teru (29)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR FILM-MAKING

Kayode Kasum (28)

Dare Olaitan (28) – Winner

Chinney Love Eze (31)

Rahama Sadau (26)

Uche Odoh (30)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR LITERATURE

Akwaeke Emezi (32)

Ijeoma Umebinyuo (30)

Lanaire Aderemi (20)

Oyinkan Braithwaite (31)

Otosirieze Obi-Young (25) – Winner

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR MEDIA

Peace Itimi (24)

Paul Alasiri (27)

Edirin Edewor (28)

Samuel Ajiboye (28) – Winner

Tosin Olaseinde (31)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR PROFESSIONAL SERVICE

Bukky Akomolafe (31) – Winner

Adesola Ade-Unuigbe (28)

Yinka Iyinolakan (30)

Onoriode Reginald Aziza (27)

Peter Tega Oghenejobo (32)

PRIZE FOR OAP (VISUAL & AUDIO)

Osato ‘EDK’ Edokpayi (27)

Huisaina ‘Dashen’ Usman (31)

Mayowa Ogundele – Adegoke (30)

Simi ‘Drey’Adejumo (21) – Winner

Sandra Ezekwesili (30)

PRIZE FOR PUBLIC SERVICE

Adetola Onayemi (28) – Winner

Ibijoke Faborede (31)

Moses Onalapo (29)

Dr Achama Eluwa (31)

Fehintola Ajogbasile and Judith Oguzie (27/32)

PRIZE FOR SPORTS

Al-farouq Aminu (29)

Georgia Oboh (18)

Eseoghene Oguma (21)

Samuel Chukwueze (23)

Israel Adesanya (30) – Winner

PRIZE FOR EDUCATION

Olaseni Cole (32) – Winner

Omozino Eguh (28)

Eyitayo Ogunmola (31)

Seyi Oluyole (27)

Farida Kabir (27)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR TECHNOLOGY

Chinedu Azodoh/ Adetayo Bamiro (29/32)

Zang Luka Bot (28) – Winner

Muhammad Salisu Abdullahi (28)

Timothy Adeleye (25)

Funfere Koroye (29)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR FASHION

Andrea Iyamah (26)

Derin Fabikun (29)

Tuboboreni Sandrah (28) – Winner

Osemwengie Victor Odion (31)

Kenneth Izedonmwen (29)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR BUSINESS

Adekunle Hassan (31)

Obi Ozor (30)

Chika Madubuko (30)

Olawale Ayilara (31) – Winner

Tiwalola Olanubi (31)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR JOURNALISM

Aisha Salaudeen (25)

Joey Akan (28)

Ayodeji Rotinwa (29)

Shola Lawal (25) – Winner

Kiki Mordi (28)

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR PHOTOGRAPHY

Adah Clarence (30)

Yemi Ajala (31)

Praise Nnemeka (21)

Stephen Tayo (25)

Tolani Alli (27) – Winner

THE FUTURE AWARDS AFRICA PRIZE FOR YOUNG PERSON OF THE YEAR

Debo Ogundoyin (32)

Kenneth Udekwe (32)

Damini ‘Burna Boy’ Ogulu (28) – Winner 

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