As part of events leading up to the Best of Nollywood Awards 2016, some of Nigeria’s revered and renowned actors would storm Umuahia, the Abia State capital, Monday, October 24th, for a reading and mentoring session with secondary school students. In the stellar line up of celebrity readers are Segun Arinze, Daniel K Daniel, Queen Nwokoye, Belinda Effiah, Saheed Balogun and Okey Bakassi. Others are Bimbo Akintola, Junior Pope, Fathia Balogun and Kannywood finest, Ali Nuhu. This year’s BON Awards is hosted by the Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu led-Abia State government.
Aside the reading proper, to be led by the First Lady, Mrs. Nkechi Ikpeazu, the executive producer, BON awards, Seun Oloketuyi, said, there would be inspirational talks, photo ops and an autograph-signing session. “We look forward to an exciting time with the kids,” Oloketuyi quipped, adding, “As you well know, the celebrity reading session with secondary school students is the first of a variety of activities preceding the BON awards proper in December. The chosen celebrities are past winners and nominees of the BON awards. What we promise the lucky students is a life-changing opportunity to meet with their role models and favourite celebrities and hear directly from them time-tested success nuggets, tips they need to be better individuals.” Continuing, Oloketuyi said, more than anything else, he is always thrilled and humbled when celebrities leave all they are doing to be a part of the mentoring and reading session.
For Nwokoye, a multiple BON awards recipient, “It’s always a thing of joy for me to talk to young people seeking direction in life. I believe that only the foolish would think that wisdom is something to keep locked in a drawer and only the fearful would feel empowerment is something best kept to oneself, or the few, and not shared with all. I don’t have the opportunity to do this all the time so, the BON celebrity reading offers just the right platform.”
Similarly, Arinze, who was appointed artistic director for the BON awards last year, said, “As a leader in my field, I hold fervently to the belief that leaders should influence others in such a way that it builds people up, encourages and edifies them so they can duplicate this attitude in others. What we would be doing on the 24th in Abia goes beyond just reading, it is a character development session for the kids.”