The 3rd edition of the Anambra Book and Creativity Festival is here. The event will afford writers, artists, book and creativity enthusiasts and other relevant stakeholders an opportunity to grow the literary world when they converge in Awka, the Anambra State capital between November 24 and 28. This is in what promises to be a harvest of possibilities for participants and the target environment.
The festival, which is an initiative of ANBUKRAFT (Anambra Book and Creativity Network), was initiate in 2012 with the intention to increase intellectual awareness and love of books as gateway to knowledge acquisition and creativity. A foundation member of ANBUKRAFT, Associate Prof. Chuu Krydz Ikwuemesi, says that “the annual event was contrived to create a sustainable platform which can encourage and cultivate knowledge production, creativity and reading culture as a way of contributing to tourism in Anambra State.” This, Ikwuemesi believes, will be used as a tool to correct some of the negative notions held about Anambra in Nigeria.
Probably because of the influence of Onitsha as one of the centres of commerce in Nigeria, the perception of Anambra as a state peopled by entrepreneurs and business people is rife, but the state has always made and continues to make significant progress in learning. The Anambra Book and Creativity Festival is a home-grown initiative conceptualized to help foster attitudinal change among the people. The festival’s goals are therefore in line with the visible on-going reforms in the educational sector in Anambra State. Schools in Anambra have witnessed improved learning conditions and management, and these have brought the state to a preeminent position in major national examinations.
Moreover, some of Nigeria’s best writers, artists and intellectuals are Anambra indigenes and they have contributed greatly to knowledge and cultural production in Nigeria and beyond. Such names as Chinua Achebe, Prof. Chukwuemeka Ike, late Prof. Ben Enwonwu, Chimamanda Adichie, all from Anambra State are world renowned art and literary icons.
ANBUKRAFT, therefore, hopes to use this event as a vehicle to bring home some of these people as resource to further drive a culture of democratization of learning and creativity. The event is not provincial as other acclaimed intellects and creative people from different parts of Nigeria will be participating in panel discussions and round tables. Some of the visiting speakers and resource persons include Prof Frank Ugiomoh, Dr Obari Gomba,(University of Port Harcourt), Dr Simon Ikpakronyi (Director of Research and Publication, National Gallery of Art, Abuja),Akwele Suma Glory(Ghana) and many others.
The above persons will, in addition to a cream of Anambra intellectuals and others from neighbouring states, discuss such topics under themes such as “Re-reading Achebe and Okigbo in Light of Contemporary Reality”, “Writers and Artists as Legislators of Society,” “Globalisation and the Nigerian Writer: Wither the Publishing Industry?” “Extending the Frontiers of Entrepreneurial Opportunities: The Place of the Nigerian Artist.”
An interesting part of the programme is the special reading session for school children that will have selected books read out to them by distinguished personalities. Also, some selected authors will read excerpts of their books to the children in this segment of the event. The highly promising festival will feature exhibition of Books, Art and Craft, Symposia, Workshop, Performances, Fashion Show and Awards