The Executive Secretary of National Institute of Cultural Orientation (NICO), Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, has described the death of Nigeria’s literary icon and author of many novels, Professor Chinua Achebe, as a tragedy to Nigeria and a big loss to the writers’ community African and, indeed, all over the world.
Ayakoroma said the demise affects the entire world because the late writer was celebrated internationally as a master story-teller, which his popular novel, Things Fall Apart, a novel he wrote at the young age of 28 in 1958, had proved.
Describing the novel as a classic, Ayakoroma recalled that in the year 2008, when the 50th Anniversary of the publication of Things Fall Apart was celebrated, the novel was listed as one of the greatest 100 books of the 20th Century.
Commiserating with the family of the literary giant, Dr. Ayakoroma said though the death is a very big blow, literary artists are consoled by the fact that he had put Nigeria on the global literary map, and he will continue to be a reference point in World Literature in many years to come.
Stating that Achebe promoted Nigerian culture through his works, Ayakoroma said: “Achebe was one Nigerian author recognized for his key role in the development of African literature and culture. He was a master story teller; he promoted African culture with his works; and he promoted Nigeria culture through his writing. He first made his mark in 1958 with the novel, Things Fall Apart. It is a classic novel that will never be forgotten. He was one of the founding fathers of African literature. He was a complete man of letters, because apart from novels he wrote good essays, short stories and poems. Also, his seminal work, Things Fall Apart, played a critical role in establishing post-colonial African literature.”
Nwagbo Pat Obi