Eminent Nigerian scholars in communication education stormed Free Town, capital of Sierra Leone, to honour one of the leading communication scholars in Africa, Professor Cecil Blake.
Professor Blake, was honoured for his contributions to communications and media by the organizers of the Idowu Sobowale International conference. The conference was held on 18th and 19th October in Free Town, Sierra Leone.
The Idowu Sobowale conference recognizes African communicators who significantly contributed to promoting and showcasing African messages through the media.
The Idowu Sobowale International Conference theme was, “Media Integration, Peace-building and Intercultural Dialogue in Africa.” This is the 4th edition that has brought together scholars, researchers and seasoned communicators to present papers on emerging issues on the continent.
The keynote speaker, HRH Igwe Prof. Onuora Nwuneli, from Anambra State Nigeria, said four years ago when the conference started it was challenging but with resiliency from the organizers it has taken on a life of its own. He said this year’s conference in Sierra Leone was designed to recognize Prof. Cecil Blake for his outstanding performance and contributions to African media and for facilitating the award of scholarships to students through the Africa Council for Communication Education (ACCE).
Prof. Nwuneli recalled his 30-years relationship with Prof. Blake in the academic and professional theatre. He said he had transformed the media landscape and achieved phenomenal success in the academic and social platform. He described Blake as young, confident and aggressive.
He said past Africa leaders from Ghana to Tanzania and down South African had long foreseen what the continent is going through today in terms of it issues and manner at which it should be disseminated but those present at that time never took such words seriously.
Prof Nwuneli said since pre-colonial days the masters had never given Africa the chance to think outside the box because politicians have transformed from ‘something’ to ‘nothing’.
He observed that the African Council for Communication Education (ACCE) was established and later collapsed as a result of funding gaps, adding that Prof. Blake single-handedly raised the Nigeria chapter.
The Chair of the conference opening ceremony, Nana Pratt, said, “Intercultural dialogue is a factor in the equation for realizing positive intra- and inter-group relationships in sustaining the present peace in the country.
There were presentations on the life of Prof. Blake from when he was a singer to his days as journalist, Minister, research expert and University teacher.
Among the Nigerian contingent to the 4th Prof. Sobowale Conference held in Free Town Sierra Leone are Professor Idowu Sobowale (Atlantic Uni), Prof. Onuora Nwuneli (Eminent Scholar in Africa and currently Traditional Ruler of Igbakwu community in Ayamelum LGA of Anambra state), Prof. Umaru Pate (Bayero Uni, Kano), Prof. Lai Oso (LASU), Prof. Innocent Okoye (UNILLORIN), Prof. Olufemi Onabajo (Caleb Uni), Prof. Rotimi Olatunji (LASU), Dr. Sandra Ladi Adamu (ABU, Zaria), Dr. Oladokun Omojola (Covenant Uni), Dr. Olusola Oyero (Covenant Uni), Dr. Mike Ukonu (UNN), Dr. Ben-Collins Ndinojuo (UNIPORT), Dr. Nwabueze, C. (COOU), Dr. Ifedayo Daramola (AAU), Casmir Obiakor (COOU), Dr. Ferdinand Okoro (DELPOLY, Oghara), Dr. Ishola Lamidi (AAU), Dr. Olugbenga Abimbola (AAU), and Dr. Lanre Amodu (Covenant Uni).
(with contributions from awoko.org)
wow! it was indeed a day to remember…