Ikeogu Oke has been awarded the 2017 NLNG Prize for his poetry collection, The Heresiad. Alongside him on the shortlist were Tanure Ojaide, for Songs of Myself: Quartet, and Ogaga Ifowodo, for A Good Mourning. The longlist had eleven poets.​

At $100,000, the NLNG Prize for Literature is the richest in Africa, and honours a published book of literature. It rotates among four genres: poetry, prose fiction, drama, children’s literature. The year 2017 is for poetry.

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Here is Kola Tubosun‘s interview with Oke:

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Published by Kraft Books Ltd., Ikeogu Oke’s The Heresiad “employs the epic form in questioning power and freedom” and “probes metaphorically the inner workings of societies and those who shape them.” A journalist, Oke is an alumnus of both the University of Ibadan and the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

The 2017 judges are: Tade Ipadeola, winner of the 2013 prize, which was the last prize for poetry, for his collection, The Sahara Testaments; Razinat Mohammed, associate professor of literature at the University of Maidugri; and the chair, Ernest Enenyonu, professor of Africana Studies at the University of Michigan-Flint, USA.

The 2016 prize, for prose fiction, went to Abubakar Adam Ibrahim’s novel, Season of Crimson Blossoms.

Congratulations to Ikeogu Oke.

Click HERE to buy The Heresiad.