Wednesday, June 27, 2007

RE: Exciting Job Opportunities in the Niger Delta (Application by Celestina Afakiriya)

Application received Wednesday June 27 2007 (posted in my COMMENTS page):

In response to vacancy, here

The Employer
Niger Delta Militant Group
South South Nigeria
West Africa,
Milky Way,

Dear Sir,

Expression of Interest for the post of Area Head, Kidnapping

I wish to be considered for the above post because I believe I have the requisite training, experience and innate ability required for the job.

For the past 15 years, I have been an active member in various organisations whose main thrust is militant agitation. These organisations include �Struggle for the liberation southern kaduna sons�; where I was assistant head of the guard room, Movement for the electrification of the Ishan Community; where I was the coordinator of the militant mothers wing, and Zango Kataf Community Progressive Force where I was in charge of recruitment for young soldiers just to mention a few.

I am presently on active duty as the assistant commandant at the kafanchan School of Basic Combat Training in Militancy and other Related Endeavours. My duties include drafting willing and unwilling members to the academy between the ages of 4 and 90, physical training and strategic military intelligence to wrest power from the hands of the councillor of felele ward Mr Gabe Ohimoja and hand over to our commander Major Izaiah Godlove.

I am fluent in Hausa and Ijaw. And also fluent in Italian; after all, I know words like pasta in Italian and Berger in German.

I have successfully been able to distinguish between Oyinbo and albino and as a result was able to save the BCPF some funds when our assistant area office kidnapper wanted to kidnap Mr Oyibo Uwaezuoke, thinking he was a British National. Due to my impressive credentials in this area I have also been able to comprehend that Mr Ben Bruce is a juxtaposition of Scottish blood and albinism and that Mr Eddie Iroh of FRCN fame is an albino who had the foresight to make money early in order to purchase some packaged melanin to improve his lot.

Swimming is one of my greatest strengths and I hold the potiskum record for underwater water diving for holding my breath in the shower for over 30 seconds.

I am able to recognise fake naira notes as I have undergone the Fake Naira Detection Course at the Afghanistan School of Weaponry and Military Strategy.

I have a strong ability never to forget a face which enabled me to recognise one Mr Elijah Efepariola when he tried to infiltrate our training camp when I was at the Abraka School of Bomb Manufacture and Explosive Fabrication; recognising the senators and ministers will be a work in a military park for me.

All the above combined with my innate skill in weapon acquisition, bomb detection and detonation, otumokpo recognition and neutralisation and hostage taking in extreme weather conditions, make me the best person for the job.

Please find attached, photos of my exploits in Hostage taking and kidnapping.

Looking forward to hearing from you soon.

Celestina Afakiriya


My Heart is Buried Somewhere In this City

Abeokuta, by Omo Alagbede, 2005 (c)

Update: Picture taken from Olumo Rock. In the distance - if you look hard enough) you can see the River Ogun...

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Don't you miss OBJ?

Nigeria has shut itself down again. The battle that used to be between OBJ and OSH (Oshiomole) has now become a Umar vs Omar rumble(thanks to Tayo Odukoya for this appellation). Past two days I have been under house arrest, like many other citizens of this country. The negotiation meetings keep stretching into midnight in Abuja, just as the fuel queues and the frustrations stretch into the dark recesses of our individual and collective patience.

Meanwhile, Babasanjo is back in Ota, feeding his chickens and probably chuckling at his capacity to engineer mischief for a hundred and forty million "animals called men" - or is it "animals called masses". He poured sand into the VAT garri and attached a kite to the price of petrol; and like a naughty schoolboy ran off the playground to watch from a hideout the confusion he had invented.

How I wish Fela were alive to sing about these latest happenings...

Of course, if OBJ were still in power, you think there'd be all these midnight meetings between Govt and Labour... I trust my OBJ. He'd simply have conjured up another G-something meeting in Turkmenistan, hopped onto his JET and disappeared. When labour don strike tire, na dem go use dem mouth call the ting off! By then, of course, Baba would have departed Turkmenistan, and entered Kathmandu, in search of chicken farmers to invite for "foreign investment" in Ota, sorry, Nigeria... enroute the North Pole to visit the Association of Nigerian-born eskimos and the entire Nigerian community there...

Now, poor Yar'Adua is left fighting another man's battle...

I have heard people say that OBJ decided to punish the country for refusing him a third term... it might be true, those who know the man say he is an 80-year-old, oops... sorry, 70-year-old bundle of vindictiveness...

And I have heard too that the Supreme court verdict concerning Anambra state was payback time by the Judges for the 8-year rascality of Baba... it was their way of hitting him by hitting his adopted son, Andy Uba(sanjo), the man who reportedly

1) doesn't have the doctorate he is claiming
2) used the Nigerian AirForce 1 to smuggle hundreds of thousands of dollars,
3) "appointed" Maurice Iwuruwuru as INEC Chairman.

Check these sites out:

Uba 1

Uba 2

Now Uba is gone, plus all the money he spent to get elected. I wonder if this scenario would have played out had Baba still been in power... methinks OBJ would simply have declared a state of emergency in Anambra state and appointed Andy Uba as sole admin-is-traitor, or better still, declared a state of emergency in the Supreme Court and declared Justice Lamidi Adedibu as the Sole Administrator of the Supreme Court of Nigeria...

But in the meantime, I hear that the next "the-owner" of the largest "Umbrella" in Africa, may be Chief, uhm, uhm, abeg read the full story here HERE... no be for my mouth you go hear am...

Monday, June 18, 2007


From my "iYahoo" Msngr

Before the marriage:

He: Yes. At last! It was so hard to wait.
She: Do you want me to leave?
He: NO! Don't even think about it.
She: Do you love me?
He: Of course!
She: Have you ever cheated on me?
He: NO! Why are you even asking?
She: Will you kiss me?
He: Yes!
She: Will you hit me?
He: No way! I'm not such kind of person!
She: Can I trust you?
He: Yes.
She: Dear!!

Now, after the marriage - you can read it from the bottom upwards!!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Writing Contests and Prizes

A. B. C. Words in Action
Authors for the Betterment of Children


10 (ten) first prizes will be granted. The prize will consist in the
publishing of a book, of which each awarded work will constitute
a chapter. The book will be published under the title The
Unending Book with the subtitle In Search of the End, and will
be presented at the 2008 Miami International Book Fair, under
the auspice of Words in Action. The laureates will be invited to
participate in the presentation of the book where they will sign
autographs and will receive 10 (ten) books plus an honor



FIRST. – The contest is open to all authors, of all nationalities, in English or Spanish language, without restrictions regarding the amount of stories entered. The stories should be unpublished and not pending for resolution in any other literary contest.
SECOND. - The extension of the works will not surpass 30 pages in model DIN A 4, Font: Times New Roman, Size: Double-spaced 12, Format: PDF
Read on here

The ElectroBooks Competition

To help us find these new voices, we are running this competition with prizes up to US$500 and opportunities to be published in serial form. So if you have a fast-paced novel, a short story or even the first few chapters then we want to hear from you.


1st Prize US$500
2nd Prize US$200
3rd Prize US$100

TO ENTER Just email your entry to the following address making sure to include your name and contact details:
CLOSING DATE - The last day for entries is the 7th of July 2007. Winners will be notified by email on the 20th of July 2007. Payment is in the currency of your choice.
QUESTIONS - If you have problems sending us your entry or if you have any questions about the competition, please contact us at
LEGAL - All entries submitted to this competition are copyrighted by the individual authors and cannot be reproduced without their permission.

Guidelines for the 2007 Franklin-Christoph Poetry Contest

We will award $2450 in total prizes, including the $1000 cash grand prize.

Submission Period
Entries accepted May 1-Dec 31 (postmark dates), 2007.

What to Submit
Original, unpublished poem of any theme. Limit of 3 entries per contestant. Entries should not exceed 100 lines each.

First Prize, $1,000 cash and publication on
Five Merit Award Winners, each to receive a $290 1901 Fountain Pen, or alternate FC product of their choice of equal or less value, and publication on

Entry is Free
There will be no fee or other obligation for entering this contest.

December 31, 2007. Your entry must be postmarked or submitted online by this date.

Preparing Your Entry
Submit one copy of your poems online or by mail. Provide your contact information within your email, or on a separate cover sheet if submitting by mail. If your poem contains complex formatting, such as centered text or italic type, we recommend submitting by mail. Please make your entry easy to read — no illustrations, fancy fonts or decorative borders.

How To Submit
Email to by either pasting within message or attachment.

or mail to:

Franklin-Christoph Poetry Contest
7511 Mourning Dove Rd. Ste. 104
Raleigh, NC 27615

Please include a cover letter (or email) with your name and contact number. The poem itself should not contain your name or any contact information. We will hold original copies at our headquarters, and submit anonymous copies to our panel of judges.

Announcement of Winners
The winners will be announced in our Client List Email and on on January 15, 2008.

Entries Must Be Original and Unpublished
Your entries must be original, written by you, unpublished (either in print or in an online journal), and not have received a monetary award from any other contest. Self-published work is not eligible. Exceptions: Poems posted to the web outside of online journals, such as to a bulletin board, email list, personal web page, critique site or public forums are eligible for entry. Please email us if you're unsure of eligibility. Our staff will research all submissions for prior publication.

Simultaneous Submission Allowed
You may submit your poems simultaneously to this contest and to other contests and publishers. Please notify us if one of your entries wins an award in another contest or is published elsewhere.

English Language
Poems should be in English. Poems translated from other languages are not eligible.

We respect your privacy. Franklin-Christoph does not sell or rent customer or contestant information to third parties.

You retain the copyright to your submission. If you place as finalist or better, Franklin-Christoph only requests permission to publish your work on, in our email publications and in our press releases. Any other potential use will be negotiated with you.

Franklin-Christoph will utilize a panel of independent judges from a staff at a local college. Members of the FC Staff, or other economically affiliated persons are not eligible to enter.

We are open to poetry in all forms, on all subjects, short or tall, large or small.

Thank you for you participation, and we look forward to receiving you entry.

We will not solicit entrants in any way other than to confirm entry and announce winners. If you would like to join our Client List for writing contest updates, enter below.


At Seattle Pacific University, we’re learning to engage the culture, with the ultimate goal of bringing about positive change in the world through the gospel of Jesus Christ. In the pages of Response, we offer glimpses of the many and varied ways in which that mission is being fulfilled. But we know that there is much more to discover, many stories that have yet to be told. You may have observed some of them. You may have lived some of them.

Response invites you to submit an essay (750–1,000 words) that conveys in some way — whether through a personal story, investigative reporting, or some other form of creative nonfiction — the theme of “engaging the culture, changing the world.”

The winning entry will be featured in the Winter 2008 magazine, and the writer will receive a $250 prize.

Deadline: August 1, 2007

Send your essay to, or mail it to Response, Seattle Pacific University, 3307 Third Avenue West Suite 116, Seattle, Washington 98119.

Please include your name, address, email, and daytime phone number when you send your entry.

Competition Rules

Each entrant may submit one essay to the competition. Essays must be original, unpublished works.

Your entry must be accompanied by your name, address, email, and daytime phone number in your email.

The competition is open to anyone, except Seattle Pacific University employees and their immediate families (spouses or children).

Entrants will receive an email acknowledgement that their entry has been received. The winner will be notified by December 1, 2007.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Chimamanda Adichie = Orange + Purple + Yellow

Congratulations to Chimamanda on her winning the 2007 Orange Broadband Prize for Fiction( , which she narrowly missed (after making the shortlist) in 2005...

...A fitting prize-name for the author of a purple hibiscus and a yellow half-sun...

This "half of a yellow sun" is in reality one full, brilliant, blinding sun of a book!

Way to go, Sister!

Goings-Ons (June Update)

A quick one on what Omo Alagbede has been up to lately....

My short story, Husbands-Abroad Anonymous appears in what has turned out to be the greatest of all the great Farafina Magazine ( issues that have appeared thus far... Toni Kan's WOMEN issue (Issue 10). An all-women issue, save for 3 male "lesbians" (as TK termed us in his editorial): TK, Omo Alagbede, and my big bros Vic Ehi with his hilarious "owambe" photography...

Funmi Iyanda (Nigeria's Oprah, she is called) is there with a humorous, subversive "feminist" piece (memoir), My Sis Chika Unigwe is there with a short story; Ijeoma Iromantu is there with her poems (her first appearance in print, and the first of what I know will be many more), Marie Fatayi-Williams is there with an excerpt from her book FOR LOVE OF ANTHONY in memory of her son Anthony, who was killed in the July 7, 2005 London bomb blasts, Onyinye Egenti (I remember her from secondary school, The International School, Ibadan - she was my senior; and her bro Afam was my classmate); Kaine Agary, editor of TAKAII and author of the wave-making Niger-delta novel, Yellow-Yellow; amongst a handful of others.

Molara Wood (Wordsbody) has a review of the issue here:

3 of my pieces appear in the newest glossy magazine in town, MADE magazine ( It's True Love + Genevieve + GQ for AFRICAN MEN. The launch was on Sunday June 3 at the News Caffe, The Palms Shopping Mall, Lekki Lagos. Cool affair: the Storm crew (Sasha, Ikechukwu et al) led by the boss himself, Obi Asika; Olisa Adibua (compere), Uzoma Dozie, Tunde Folawiyo, and a host of other celebrities whom the celebrity-ignorant Omo Alagbede had no one to point out and identify to him.

Left the place feeling slightly floaty, yet I had only 2 glasses of wine (one white, one red) and a chapman... must have been the exhilaration of seeing my work in such a finely-wrought magazine that catalysed the fastforwarded fermentation of the wines...


a few weeks back I was on Metro FM Lagos (interview)... (thanks FT for the opportunity!)

One or two poems have appeared here and there... Sentinel poetry June 2007, The Guardian Lagos, and a number forthcoming in the coming weeks...

Last but not the least, this poor neck is breaking under the weight of writing assignments and deadlines... don't forget that I work at an 8 - 5, so I'm not your sit-at-a-mahogany-desk-in-a-heavenly-resort-and-dreamily-fill-reams-of-computer-screen-with-award-winning-critic-wowing-work kinda writer...

To Think is to Differ

Sent this piece in as part of my application for a consulting job with a Nigerian consulting firm in April 2005 (hadn't even started my NYSC then...) We were asked to send in our CVs, along with a one-page essay on "to think is to differ".

I never heard from them, he he he...

Whad'ya think about it? Tries to sound over-learned?

(c) Omo Alagbede, 2005

What progress individuals could make, and what progress the world would make, if thinking were given proper consideration!
- Thomas Edison

To think is to differ.

The above equates Thinking and Thought with Difference, with Change, with a shift of Paradigm. Probably the biggest distinguishing factor between man and animal is the ability to think, to ponder, to take a thing/concept/idea and roll it around on the floor of a mental Gymnasium and come up with new perspectives and alternatives. That is probably why Thinking doesn’t show up in the List of Functions of All Living Things – MR. NIGER – Movement, Respiration, Nutrition, Growth, Excretion etc.

Thinking is the sole preserve of the Homo Sapiens.

To think is to toss around, to examine, to question, to challenge, to view from a succession of differing viewpoints all in the quest to see a fuller picture. To think is to refuse to accept at face value, to be skeptical of the status quo. Thomas Edison, the American inventor, links progress to thinking. In his words “By developing [our] thinking powers [we] expand the capacity of [our] brain and attain new abilities.” He considered Thinking to be the true labor and not Sweating. He had the following quotation by Sir Joshua Reynolds hung in every room of his laboratory:

There is no expedient to which a man will not resort to avoid the real labor of thinking.

What more proof of the indispensability of Thinking to Progress can we find than in the immense successes of Edison in the area of Creative Prowess?

To think is to differ. When we think, and allow our brains to function uninhibited, we are far more likely than a majority of the population to discover what has not been discovered; what is different. It has been said that the true definition of insanity is “doing the same thing and expecting different results.” Thinking helps us to avoid doing the “same thing”. We are more likely to find proof of why we should move in a different direction than the majority of the population – who are satisfied with living according to “cut-and-dried” traditions and norms and would prefer to exist and function through life in “auto-pilot, don’t-raise-dust” mood.

Virtually every great person and entity has, throughout history, had to plough on in a direction different from the norm, and endure mockery and opposition, in order to achieve what they achieved. The only way to discover this “different direction” has been – and still remains – to Think, to throw every possible option open to questioning and challenge, and consider even the seemingly “crazy” idea.

To think is to differ. To think is to Think. There’s no alternative.