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“The End SARS movement rekindled a sense of love in me for Nigeria.”—Arinze Ifeakandu

“The End SARS movement rekindled a sense of love in me for Nigeria.”—Arinze Ifeakandu

Jun 17, 2023

Alobam is actually one of my favorite books. So, the basic description of the story is that there is this character who has lost his brother and is now in a relationship with the brother’s friend with whom they all grew up together. Also, he’s also in a kind of abusive relationship with a partner from his secondary school. Basically, he’s in an open relationship with his late brother’s friend. The version of the story in this book and the one you read that was published was rewritten. I have been trying to rework that structure still one night, still similar stories. But then it was right after End Sars, and that sense of you’re living in a place with so many strangers, people from Abia, Lagos and Oyo and from Calabar and they all come together like smoke. Where I grew up is like face me I face you kind of situation and then dealing with like a little bit of you know having to share a bathroom. You have to do it but then there’s a sense of having a Community. But again the streets also have stories which is something I was thinking about when writing that story. I wanted to create that sense of place and again I think I was a bit homesick. For me, what End Sars did was to rekindle a sense of love for not just Nigeria as an idea but Nigeria as a collection of people. So, it was like going back to my childhood when I was growing up and yes this is the Nigeria I know. I know we have people take care of each other and that was what I was doing with that story. I’m just going to put it all.

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