The Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA) has secured funding to facilitate the 2018 edition of ANA/Yusuf Ali Nationwide Literary Awareness Campaign. In a release signed by Mr. Wale Adedoyin, the Publicity Secretary (South), he said the association received the sum of 3 million naira on February 5, 2018, for the 2018 project from the donour, Yusuf Ali (SAN), an Ilorin-based renowned legal practitioner, author and dedicated philanthropist.
The grant was first secured by the National EXCO in 2012 and all state chapters of the Association received sub-grants of N150,000 at various times between 2012-2014 for local literary awareness campaigns involving secondary schools across the country. In 2015, the grant was applied by the then National Executive Council of ANA to host a workshop on fiction writing in Abuja in which about 25 students, drawn from tertiary institutions across the country via a competitive process, participated.
In 2016, the Denja Abdullahi-led National Executive Council of ANA took the literary awareness campaign a notch further by focusing on innovative literary awareness campaign among tertiary institutions across the country through the States’ chapters. Chapters submitted proposals on envisaged activities based on which they were assessed and sub-grants finally awarded to 16 chapters that met the provisioned requirements.
The grant, he said, was used in 2017 to publish three children’s literature titles under the Nigerian Writers Series(NWS) which have been distributed to chapters of ANA Nationwide to power ANA‘s A-Book-A-Child nationwide project that was flagged off at the ANA ‘s 36th International Convention which held in Makurdi, Benue State in October, 2017.
For this year, the Yusuf Ali grant, he said, would be deployed to facilitate a comprehensive media supplement on the projects executed over the years since 2012 to date and a workshop for 15 selected chairmen of ANA chapters focusing on “innovations in contemporary literary awareness campaigns” to deepen the execution of the project in the coming years.
Yusuf Ali, who, in 2015 promised to sustain the annual grant to ANA for life, is a Nigerian lawyer who received the highest honour available to practising lawyers in 1997 when he was called to the inner bar as a Senior Advocate of Nigeria. He attended the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife) and is the Principal Partner at the Law Firm of Yusuf O. Ali & Co in Ilorin.
His reputation in the Bar has been balanced by a deep interest in literature which has seen him supporting the Kwara State Chapter of the Association of Nigerian Authors, as well as serve as an Editor-in-Chief of the Nigerian Bar Journal. He is also an associate lecturer at the Faculty of Law of the University of Ilorin.