Interview with Maraji and Taaooma, the women weavers of Akwete – the best Nigerian articles of the week

Maraji and Taaooma

Each week here at YNaija, we round up the best Nigerian writing on the internet, highlighting the stories, profiles, interviews and in-depth reporting that rise above the daily churn.

Here are the ones that caught our attention:

A deep dive into the proposed guidelines for e-hailing companies in Lagos – Olumuyiwa Olowogboyega 

The provision means that the Lagos state government will collect taxes, licencing fees and then a percentage from every trip completed on these platforms. While operators kick against this provision, if it goes ahead to be implemented on August 20, the real losers will be the customers. Uber and Bolt will pass this 10% cost along to end users, making cab fares more expensive.

How two Nigerian women are breaking into comedy’s boy club – Wilfred Okichie 

On the internet, there are no such gatekeepers. And for Nigerian women, that means they are finally beginning to see their own experiences reflected back on their smartphone screens. Instead of being the butt of male comedians’ jokes, female comedians like Maraji say they are flipping the script, showing that women can dish out humor too.

Reimagination and decoration of language: An interview with Nome and Salako – Artmosterrfic 

The decorative feature of language you find in my poetry is intentional. I mean you don’t want to write a poem that reads like an everyday conversation, though there is a place for that, too. The decorative feature which, I believe, means the aesthetic strength in the level of syntax is achieved because I believe the beauty of poetry lies in it is written. Language, and other aesthetic features. I hope you understand. Now, how I use language to achieve this decorative feature is through constant revision, and study of the older poets I admire.

The women weavers of Akwete – Otosirieze Obi-Young 

After she turned seven, and her arms were long enough, Grace Anelechi Okere began to weave. She had spent all the years of her life close to her grandmother’s upright loom, watching the aging woman, one of the most skilled weavers in Akwete and all of the Ndoki clan and Ukwa East Local Government Area of Abia State, spin the vibrantly coloured, famously alluring textile named after their town, until one day, her grandmother turned to her and said, “You have learned enough, now you can try.”

The last time I was Laycon – Victor Daniel 

If I thought I was drawn to the gloomy ambiance of Kemi’s existence, then I did not know the storm that was coming, because a few weeks into February, news came that her father had passed, and she had taken the first available flight back home. I had gone to see her when she returned, and even though she tried her best to wear that smile grieving people wore when they wanted to show strength, I could see right through it, and it tore right through me with such intensity that I could only fumble my condolences and leave. I would think back to this moment, and recognize it as the tipping point of my passive attraction to her.

Dust to Digital – Fu’ad Lawal 

Libraries have struggled with the funding and resources to properly manage their archives. Let’s say you want to find a newspaper from the day you were born. First, you’ll need to figure out which national library holds the newspaper, then you’ll need a full day to visit their archives and dig through to find it. If you are lucky to eventually find it, it’ll most likely be loosely bound, with the newsprint falling apart.

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