Much awaited National Honours is coming on the way of Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, as he is to be conferred with one of Nigeria’s highest national academic honours, Nigerian National Merit Award (NNMA) today. A Government statement monitored on the Nigerian Television Authority 9pm Network news announced last night.
Professor Wole Soyinka who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1986, is yet to receive a National Honour from Nigeria’s Government authorities.
Two other Nigeria’s Intellectuals to be conferred with the national academic honours alongside Soyinka are Professor Chukwuemeka Vincent Ike, a Nigerian Novelist; and Professor Oye Gureje, Head of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria
The conferment on these three distinguished Nigeria’s Intellectual represents increased recognition of Intellectualism in public life. Nigeria’s President Umaru Yar’ Adua and Vice President Jonathan Goodluck are the first set of graduates to occupy Nigeria’s two topmost positions through the 2007 general elections.
Wole Soyinka, 74 received formal education at Government College in Ibadan, Nigeria and University of Leeds, where, in 1973, he took his doctorate. Soyinka has published about 20 works: drama, novels and poetry.
Professor Chukwuemeka Ike, 77, educated at the University of Ibadan and at Stanford in the USA. One of his popular novels is Toads for Supper (1965), which is set in a university and deals with love and the inherent problems that married couples from different ethnic backgrounds encounter.
Professor Oye Gureje is currently President of the Association of Psychiatrists in Nigeria and the World Psychiatrists Association Zonal Representative for West and Central Africa. He teaches at the University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria, where is the Head Department of Psychiatry