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Benue Book and Arts Festival 2019


The Benue Book and Arts festival is scheduled to take place in Makurdi the capital city of Benue State in Nigeria from 20th to 22nd June, 2019. It is being organised by SEVHAGE Literary & Development Initiative and SEVHAGE Publishers as part of the SEVHAGE Presents series of festivals. It is the second in the series.

This edition is in partnership with the African Writers of University of Sussex, United Kingdom and the University of Sussex; with support from the Centre for International Education, University of Sussex; Eunice Spring of Life Foundation; Gender and Environmental Risk Reduction Initiative, Adinya Arise Foundation, Women’s Right to Education, Arojah Concept, WRR & Praxis Magazine.

Featured writers include multiple award winning sensation, Abubakar Adam Ibrahim (author of The Whispering Treesand Seasons of Crimson Blossoms); Professor Dul Johnson (author of Why Women Won’t Make it to Heaven and Winner, ANA Prize for Fiction 2017), Dr. Maria Ajima (multiple award winning writer and critic, leading voice in Northern Nigerian literature); Agatha Agema (nee Aduro) (poet, delightful fiction writer and author of The Enchanting and other poems); Adedayo Agarau (author of For Boys who went); Ahmed Maiwada (award winning poet and author of We are Fish); sensational writer and prolific author, Chuma Nwokolo, author of Diaries of a Dead African; Isaac Attah Ogezi (award winning playwright and national legal adviser of the Association of Nigerian Authors); Innocence Silas Sharamang (Double Winner of the Korea Nigeria Poetry Prize), Servio Gbadamosi (ANA Prize for Poetry 2015 and Shortlist, Wole Soyinka Prize 2018); the literary administrator and author of City of Memories, Richard Ali; short story writer and social media influencer Eketti Edime; Bizuum Yadok (poet and author of King of the Jungle; T. J. Benson (award winning author of We won’t fade into darkness); spoken word maestros Bash Amuneni and Efe Paul Azino; spoken word diva and amazing poet, Daisy Odey; Jide Badmus (engineering poet and author of Scriptures), Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto (multiple award winning poet); best selling author, Alexander Ochogwu; publishers and editors, Amara Chimeka and Maik Ortserga; award winning poet and media enthusiast, Aondosoo Labe; short story writer and award winning poet, Debbie Iorliam; lyrical spoken word artiste, Oko Owi Ocho; poet Torkwase Igbana; literary administrators Odoh Diego Okenyodo and Sam Ogabidu, poets in their own right; among several others.

It will feature workshops, panels, book talks, theatre productions and a very big book sale with crazy discounted rates. There will be three writing workshops on Fiction (with Abubakar Adam Ibrahim), Spoken Word (with Efe Paul Azino) and Poetry (with Chuma Nwokolo). Three other workshops, one for prisoners, another for corp members and a third for photography will be announced in the future.

The writing workshops will be open to everybody. Interested participants will have to send a mail indicating their interest, the particular workshop and sample of their writing in the genre to sevhage@gmail.com. Selected participants will be notified and asked to pay a non-refundable fee of N2,000 for the workshop.

There will be a spoken word slam on the final day of the event worth N100,000 and open to any spoken word artist from around the world. The prizes for the SEVHAGE Literary Competition 2019 will also be announced.

New books will be unveiled to the public with engagements from the authors including Su’eddie Vershima Agema’s Once Upon a Village Tale (Shortlist, ANA Prize for Children’s Literature 2018) and Alexander Emmanuel Ochogwu’s Scarlet.

The festival director is S. Su’eddie Vershima Agema (Winner ANA Prize for Poetry 2014; Winner, Mandela Day Short Story Prize 2016; Shortlist PEN Nigeria/Saraba Poetry Prize 2012. Listed on Nigerian Writers Award 100 Most Influential Nigerian Writers Under 40 (2017 & 2018) while the festival manager is Otene Ogwuche.

The theme of this year’s edition is Changing Narratives. It is focused on building narratives can help expand discourse beyond the conventional, particularly in the light of growth, personal and communal development.

For more information, mails can be sent to benuefestival@gmail.com.

To register, please click the link below:



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