JP Clark: Buhari, others console Edwin Clark for loss of poet brother - Newstrends
Connect with us


JP Clark: Buhari, others console Edwin Clark for loss of poet brother



President Muhammadu Buhari has sent a condolence message to a former Federal Commissioner for Information and South-South leader, Chief Edwin Clark, for the demise of his younger brother, John Pepper Clark, an emeritus professor of literature and renowned writer.

Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, and his Delta State counterpart, Ifeanyi Okowa, are among other people that have paid tributes to the literary icon, who died on Tuesday at the age of 86, according to a statement signed by Prof. C. C. Clark and Mr Ilaye Clark, for the family.

The statement read, “The Clark-Fuludu Bekederemo family of Kiagbodo Town, Delta State, wishes to announce that emeritus professor of literature and renowned writer, Prof. John Pepper Clark, has finally dropped his pen in the early hours of today, Tuesday, 13 October, 2020.

“Prof. J. P. Clark has paddled on to the great beyond in comfort of his wife, children and sibling, around him.

“The family appreciates your prayers at this time. Other details will be announced later by the family.”

President Buhari, in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, said JP Clark’s death would leave a huge vacuum in the literary world.

It stated, “On behalf of the Federal Government, President Muhammadu Buhari extends the deepest condolence to the Clark-Fuludu Bekederemo family on the passing of renowned writer and emeritus professor of literature, Prof. John Pepper Clark.

“President Buhari pays tribute to one of Nigeria’s finest poets, dramatist and recipient of the Nigerian National Order of Merit Award for literary excellence, whose repertoire of published works depicts the hard work of a great man, devoted to a lifetime of writing, knowledge and promotion of the indigenous culture of the Ijaw nation.

“Acknowledging that Prof. J.P. Clark’s exit has, indeed, left an indelible mark in the literary world, President Buhari takes solace that his body of literary works, which earned him recognition and respect both at home and abroad, would continue to inspire upcoming Nigerian writers to pursue literary excellence and flourish in their chosen vocation.

“The President’s thoughts and prayers are with the family of the departed patriot, the government and people of Delta State and the literary community in the country.

“He prays for the peaceful repose of the soul departed.”

Governor Obaseki described the late Clark as “a great academic, celebrated poet, adding, “His literary exploits brought honour and great respect to Nigeria and his contributions to literature and education, in general, will outlive many generations.”

Governor Okowa of Delta, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Olisa Ifeajika, said the literary world had lost an enigma whose works would continue to dominate the contemporary Nigerian society.

He said, “The literary works of Professor J.P. Clark promoted Delta, Nigeria and Africa, hence his demise is being celebrated by lovers of literature all over the world.

“As a serial award-winner in poetry, the late Prof. Clark was a consummate patriot, a great literary icon and a teacher par excellence, whose literary publications inspired deep thoughts, especially on social-economic and political themes.

“On behalf of the government and people of Delta, I commiserate with the Clark-Fuludu Bekederemo family over the passing of renowned poet, literary giant and playwright, Emeritus Professor John Pepper Clark.”

Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, who described him as a literary colossus, said, “As we all mourn the transition of this great African to eternal life, our heartfelt condolences go to his dear family and our dear Papa, Chief Edwin Clark.

“Forever, the world shall recall the intellectual stature and contributions of Prof Emeritus John Pepper Clark-Bekederemo.”

A famous playwright, Prof. Femi Osofisan, saw the late poet as a complex personality, noting, “He was an embodiment of contradictions in his personality, but what interests us is his talent as a poet and writer and conscience of society.

“He wasn’t a protest poet, but was very political in his writing. He was very concerned about the issues that pertain to society.

“We are going to miss him. I would personally miss him because he is my friend and mentor.”

Born on December 6, 1933, in Kiagbodo, to an Ijaw father and Urhobo mother, Clark received his early education at the Native Authority School, Okrika (Ofinibenya-Ama), in Burutu Local Government Area (then Western Ijaw) and the Government College in Ughelli.

He had his BA degree in English at the University of Ibadan, where he edited various magazines, including the Beacon and The Horn.

He had worked as an information officer in the Ministry of Information, in the old Western Region of Nigeria, after graduation from Ibadan in 1960, as features editor of the Daily Express, and as a research fellow at the Institute of African Studies, University of Ibadan.

He served for several years as a Professor of English at the University of Lagos and retired in 1980.

In 1982, along with his wife, Ebun Odutola (a professor and former director of the Centre for Cultural Studies at the University of Lagos), he founded the PEC Repertory Theatre in Lagos.

He held visiting professorial appointments at several institutions of higher learning, including Yale and Wesleyan University in the United States.

Clark was most noted for his poetry

Continue Reading
Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply


Osun Rep unveils N100m varsity scholarship



Hon. Lukman Kayode Mudashiru

Osun Rep unveils N100m varsity scholarship

The member representing Iwo/Ayedire/Ola-Oluwa Federal Constituency of Osun State, Lukman Kayode Mudashiru, has earmarked N100 million to sponsor indigent students from the constituency for university education.

A statement on Saturday from his media office said successful applicants would be sponsored for four-year undergraduate programmes at Ahman Patigi University, Kwara State.

Mudashiru had set up a scholarship committee comprising respected individuals from the community in order to ensure transparency and efficient selection process.


He said the goal of the committee was to identify and support indigent students based on merit, assuring that the committee would discharge its duty judiciously “to maximize its impact on the lives of our youths.”

The lawmaker said: “This initiative is a testament to our unwavering dedication to the educational upliftment of our community. We are determined to ensure that deserving students receive the support they need to pursue higher education.

“Education is the bedrock of development, and I am proud to deliver on my promise to support the aspirations of our youths. This scholarship program is an investment in the future leaders of Iwo, Ayedire, and Olaoluwa Local Government Areas, and I am confident that it will yield positive results for our community.”

Osun Rep unveils N100m varsity scholarship

Continue Reading


Reps to monitor probe of military drone attack



Reps to monitor probe of military drone attack

The House of Representatives say it will monitor the investigation into the military drone attack that killed over 80 Nigerians in Kaduna State on Nov. 3.

Rep. Babajimi Benson, Chairman, House Committee on Defence, gave the assurance in a statement titled, “Tudun Biri tragedy elicits profound sorrow” in Abuja on Saturday.

He expressed regrets over the ugly incident, while tasking authorities of the Nigerian Army and other security agencies to prioritise the safety of civilians during operations.

He urged them to exercise utmost caution, and implement measures to prevent similar occurrences in the future.

He said: “The unfortunate incident in Tudun Biri community, Kaduna state, has cast a sobre mood over the hearts of all Nigerians; the House Committee on Defence is profoundly saddened by this regrettable incident.

“The loss of innocent lives in this tragic incident is heartbreaking, and our thoughts and prayers are with the affected families.


“We would like to recognise the prompt admission of responsibility by the Nigerian Army following the accidental air strike.”

He commended various stakeholders who played crucial roles in alleviating the suffering of the victims.

He said the incident underscored the significance of exercising caution and precision in military operations, particularly in areas with civilian populations.

He said the committee acknowledged the complexities encountered by the Armed Forces of Nigeria in upholding security and addressing diverse threats across the country.

He commended the dedication and sacrifices exhibited by the Armed Forces and other security agencies in the service of the nation.

“It remains crucial for the public to steadfastly support our troops, acknowledging the intricate nature of the security environment in which they operate.

“The House Committee on Defence will closely monitor the investigations and work collaboratively with the military authorities to ensure that corrective measures are implemented to prevent the recurrence of such unfortunate incidents, ” he said.

Reps to monitor probe of military drone attack


Continue Reading


Tinubu commiserates Saudi Royal family over death of Prince



President Bola Ahmed Tinubu

Tinubu commiserates Saudi Royal family over death of Prince

President Bola Tinubu, on Saturday, commiserated with the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman of Saudi Arabia, and the Royal House of Saudi on the passing of Prince Talal bin Abdulaziz bin Bandar Al Saud who died in jet crash Thursday.

The Saudi Royal Court announced that Prince Talal Bin Abdulaziz died when the Saudi Arabian Air Force’s F-15SA fighter plane crashed in Dhahran on December 7.

However, it did not disclose the injuries that led to the prince’s death.

Talal, 62, who was on a training mission died alongside one other pilot.


The last rituals for Talal will be carried out at the Imam Turki bin Abdullah Mosque in Riyadh, said the monarchy.

In a statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Ajuri Ngelale, President

Tinubu expressed grief at the loss, acknowledging the departed Prince’s excellent and dedicated service to his country throughout his outstanding career in the Royal Saudi Air Force and the Saudi Intelligence Agency.

According to the statement titled ‘President Tinubu mourns Saudi Prince Talal Bin Abdulaziz Bin Bandar Al Saud,’ the President prayed God Almighty to grant repose to the soul of the departed, and comfort for the Royal House of Saud, the Kingdom, and all who mourn this irreparable loss.

Prince Talal joins a list of Saudi Royals who were either involved in or lost their lives in aviation accidents dating back to a 2017 helicopter crash that killed Prince Mansour bin Muqrin and seven others near the Saudi-Yemeni border.

Tinubu commiserates Saudi Royal family over death of Prince

Continue Reading


Skip to content