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It's not everyday that a renowned Nigerian gets recognised and awarded with the National Honors but literary icon, Professor Chinua Achebe, has for the second time in seven years rejected an offer of a National Honor by the Nigerian government.

Professor Achebe, globally recognized as one of the world’s most outstanding novelists and intellectuals, rejected the “national honors award” in a terse statement, he said:
     “The reasons for rejecting the offer when it was first made has not been addressed let alone solved. It is inappropriate to offer it again to me. I must therefore regretfully decline the offer again.”

In 2004, in the letter in which he rejected the same honor, Achebe sent to President Olusegun Obasanjo the following, letter:
  “I write this letter with a very heavy heart. For some time now I have watched events in Nigeria with alarm and dismay. I have watched particularly the chaos in my own state of Anambra where a small clique of renegades, openly boasting its connections in high places, seems determined to turn my homeland into a bankrupt and lawless fiefdom.  I am appalled by the brazenness of this clique and the silence, if not connivance, of the Presidency.“Forty three years ago, at the first anniversary of Nigeria's independence I was given the first Nigerian National Trophy for Literature. In 1979, I received two further honors – the Nigerian National Order of Merit and the Order of the Federal Republic – and in 1999 the first National Creativity Award.“I accepted all these honors fully aware that Nigeria was not perfect; but I had a strong belief that we would outgrow our shortcomings under leaders committed to uniting our diverse peoples.  Nigeria's condition today under your watch is, however, too dangerous for silence. I must register my disappointment and protest by declining to accept the high honor awarded me in the 2004 Honors List”.

« Last Edit: November 14, 2011, 12:36 AM by Briggz5d »


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