Winners Emerge in Rising Star Competitions

winners have emerged in the fourth edition of the Greenlife Pharmaceuticals’ the Rising Star Writing Competition and Awards for primary and secondary school pupils in Nigeria.

The competition was organised by The Writers Corner in collaboration with Vuvuzela Communications Ltd to help improve children’s creative and critical thinking ability, while developing their writing skills.

The entries were either poems or short stories exploring the theme, ‘It’s ok to say no’ with a 200-word limit for primary and 500-word limit for secondary school pupils.

This was made public at a briefing held on Wednesday in Ilupeju, Lagos, where the co-ordinator of the competition and Chief Executive Officer of The Writers’ Corner, Uche Udoji, disclosed that 655 entries were received this year.

Speaking on the theme, Udoji said, “It was a well thought-out and intentional move to inspire the children to have a voice as important individuals of the society and stand up for their rights at all times against issues pertaining to all forms of pressure and abuse. This we have achieved by making the children think deeply and write at length about having reasons to say no and mean no even if it means standing alone.”

On the entries, the co-ordinator revealed that 12 entries took the first, second and third place positions while 12 other entries emerged as honorary mentions.
“Some of the popular trends as seen from entries include bullying, sexual related abuses, physical abuses, verbal and emotional abuses, drugs, alcohol and peer pressure.

“However, 15 entries were disqualified because of multiple entries and late submission. Also, write-ups that were not original, were less than 200 words, that reflected a vague understanding of the theme and displayed obvious adult assistance were disqualified.”

Stating that Greenlife Pharmaceuticals sought the steady improvement of the literacy standard among pupils in the country was the Executive Director of the company, Ebuka Chukwuka, who said, “We support this activity because we are trying to grow children in literacy, as such we need more competitions like this because statistics show that literacy in Nigeria is low. We are looking to grow the competition and bring in more children in order to build their confidence and grow the country in a positive way.”

First-place winners in the primary school category are Jayden Orji of Grange School, Ikeja, Lagos for short story writing and Fortune Osahisi of Corona School, Lekki. While the secondary school had Onyinye Onyema of Grange School come first in short story writing and Adzira Galadima of Louisville Girls’ College, Ijebu-Itelle come first in poetry. Winning write-ups were judged based on plot, story build-up, content, paragraphing, linking words, proper dialogue to mention a few.