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Showing posts from February, 2015

The Child Who Survives

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Today's poignant and haunting story comes from a sociologist in Freetown, Sierra Leone. Mohamed Gibril Sesay is a published poet and he currently teaches at Fourah Bay College. He has also served as a consultant with the nation's Truth and Reconciliation Commission and in development roles on behalf of the government of Sierra Leone.


What do we do? The child’s mother just died. Her father also just died, and she sits in the middle of the square crying. 

In normal times mothers would have rushed to pick her up, hug her, change her nappies, give her food, breastfeed her. Fathers, in the absence of mothers, would have in some deep voice asked her to stop the tears, and with patience running out would have hollered instructions left and right to people around to pick up the little child. Sisters, in the absence of fathers, would have sung lullabies, tickled her, prepared pap to give her. Brothers would have, in the absence of sisters, taken her off the ground and rushed to find si…

Secrets in the Garden City | Enuma Chigbo Phillips

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Today's excerpt is from Enuma Chigbo Phillips. Enuma's love for nature got her travelling around the globe and has resulted in two travelogues - The Gambia Diaries and Cries from the Hills of Obanliku. She has also published a children's story book - Children of Destiny, based on the real life stories of street children in Calabar, her home state.

Currently, she is a media consultant with Nigeria's Cross River State government and one of the creative directors of the Carnival Calabar Queen Pageant.

Enuma holds a Bachelor of Arts honors degree in English Language from the University of Port Harcourt and a certificate in Media Enterprise from the Pan African University, Lagos. She's worked in various capacities in THISDAY Nigeria and South Africa as reporter on health and diplomatic issues, as a special projects coordinator and an advertising administrator. She’s seen her writing evolve into script writing for stage plays and movies and shift from writing to movie prod…

Forum Signals New Era for Sierra Leonean Writers

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A circle of Sierra Leonean authors and publishers met for a day at the 50/50 Group Hall in Freetown, Saturday, January 24.  The event was organized by PEN Sierra Leone in collaboration with the Sierra Leone Writers Series and The Africanist Press. 

According to a joint statement, participants agreed to ensure more books were read in Sierra Leonean homes, schools, educational institutions and libraries. The group plans to hold a book fair, organize read campaigns, and recognize home-grown talent with literary awards. Writing contests, book tours and lectures in local bookshops and community libraries are also on the table. 

Professor Osman Sankoh (Mallam O), a health information statistician and literature publisher who established the Sierra Leone Writers Series in 2001, says the event “demonstrated a new era of collaboration.”

PEN Sierra Leone, the local chapter of PEN International, which celebrated its 10th anniversary last July, saw Saturday's event as a great opportunity to fulf…