Author Chinua Achebe Rejects Nigerian Award


The AFP is reporting that Nigerian author Chinua Achebe has rejected a government offer to honor him with one of the nation's highest awards.

The 80-year-old novelist was to be awarded the Commander of the Federal Republic title on Monday, but he has refused it, reportedly citing the state of the country, which has long been held back by corruption and mismanagement.

Nigerian media reported that he said the same conditions that led to his refusal of the award in 2004 persisted. He then cited a myriad of problems and said the state of the country was "too dangerous for silence."


Achebe, now a professor at Brown University in the United States, is widely respected for his novels and essays exploring his native land and its colonization, among other subjects. Things Fall Apart is one of his most famous novels. Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan said in a statement that he regretted the writer's decision.

President Jonathan may regret the writer's decision, but he has to respect his choices. If Achebe aligned himself with the government, it would impede his ability to write freely about is home country, from his perspective. The brilliance of his writing is trumped only by his commitment to his values and craft, which means rejecting an award that many would welcome.

Read more at Yahoo News.

In other news: Amarantus BioSciences Tops Black Tech List.

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