The Association of Nigerian Authors, Bayelsa State chapter, celebrates ace writer, broadcaster and University don, Dr. Ikiemoye Iniamagha as the writer for the month of November.
In the chapter's monthly reading session which held at the weekend in Yenagoa, the Association eulogized the literary skill and writing prowess of the Ikiemoye.
His recently published work "Excuse me, I'm not English" which just got approved by the Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC) as an English language texts for students was the book of the month. The book was read and widely appraised by members at the reading session.
THE AUTHOR, DR IKIEMOYE INIAMAGHA: a concise profile
The author, Dr Ikiemoye Iniamagha hails from Minibie, Akassa in Brass Local Government Area of Bayelsa State. Born to Retired Superintendent Stephen Iniamagha of the Nigeria Correctional Service, in Ikoyi, Lagos, he was spelled for a life of Gulliver’s travels. By the time he turned four, his father had been transferred to Aba, Abia State. Thus, on his sixth birthday, he was enrolled in Okigwe Road Primary School, Aba, in 1989.
Nurtured by a discipline and loving mother, Mrs Dorcas Iniamagha, he showed promise and defined his future by coming tops in all subjects taught. In 1992, his father was again transferred to Degema in Rivers State, then little Ikiemoye was now in Primary four. He was enrolled in New Church Primary School, Degema, where he continued his dominance, both in his academic work and sport. His fire could
not be quenched as he was appointed the Head Pupil of the school, leaving teachers, parents and pupils to marvel how a new pupil, who had only been around for less than a year, become the head pupil.
Upon admission into Community Secondary School, Krakrama, in Asari-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State in 1994, he gave no room for laxity, but kept the fire burning. It was why he was appointed Senior Prefect, an evidence of his outstanding qualities both in character and learning. He remained at the top of his class till graduation in 2000. As a gifted science student, he passed all his chosen subjects with excellence in his Senior School Certificate Examination. In fact, he had a distinction in English
However, after leaving secondary school, instead of pursuing a degree in his preferred course of study, Civil Engineering, his love for sports surprisingly redirected him into chasing a career in athletics; hence, he joined the Rivers State Athletics team and specialised in the sprints, with four hundred metres being his strong point. In no time, he became a force to reckon with in that category and went on representing Rivers State in several sports fiestas including: 2002 National Sports Festival in Edo State; 2002 Maltina National Junior Athletics Championship in Surelere, Lagos; National under 21 Athletics Championship in Calabar, Cross Rivers State, in 2004, just to mention few.
He was among the contingents that qualified to represent the country in the 2004 World Junior Athletics Championships in South Korea, two years after it co-hosted the world cup with Japan, but the sports ministry at that time disappointed them, claiming lack of funds; thus, the trip was cancelled. This disappointment was one of the reasons that contributed to his quitting active sports. While growing up, Dr Ikiemoye Iniamagha took one thing very seriously—the art of speaking fluently in English. To fulfill this desire, little Ikiemoye through the motivation of his father, developed a healthy reading habit and shared in his father’s interest in listening to the BBC World Service from his transistor radio. Indeed, his English was transformed and he would go on to ignore unkind remarks from friends and people who didn’t understand where he was headed. He continued diligently with his love for rhetoric. Because of his English speaking skills, he was advised by two friends to pursue a degree in Mass Communication, hoping he would be more useful in the industry than anywhere else. This corroborated his father’s dream, who had always wished that one day his son would become a popular media personality like the ones he enjoyed watching and listening to.
In 2005, Dr. Ikiemoye Iniamagha dropped the thought of becoming a Civil Engineer and enrolled in the University of Port Harcourt to pursue a degree in Linguistics and Communication Studies, after passing through an A’ levels preparatory programme in the same department. At the end of the four years degree programme, he emerged as the Best Graduating Student. As a result of his brilliant writing skills, he was instantly offered an intern position in Southernfield Development Partners, a Non-Governmental
Organisation where he worked as the Desk Officer, Development Communication, for only three months and left for the compulsory National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, programme in Kebbi State.
Upon his return from national service, he left for the United Kingdom to pursue a Master’s Degree in International Communication and Development at Swansea University, Wales in 2012. It was not surprising that a few months on arriving Swansea University his presence was felt. Dr Ikiemoye Iniamagha was the first Nigerian student in the history of the University to work in the Public Relations/Marketing Unit of the University. He handled sensitive responsibilities such as: preparing daily news releases of the university for Wales-based media organisations; leading the PR team to organise and publicise the university’s 2012 Winter Graduation Ceremony; chairing the research team to proffer ways to sell the
annual Welsh Challenge between Swansea university and Cardiff University in Wales; developing an interim marketing plan to sell the games to new international students in the UK. Again, he graduated tops in his M.A. programme, the only Nigerian student in the programme that year to achieve the feat. His zeal for more knowledge pushed him to enroll for a course in Presentation Skills in the English Language Training Services of the same university. Once again, he didn’t disappoint in his performance, forcing his presentation skills trainer, who was British, to inquire if he had his primary and secondary education in the United Kingdom.
On the recommendation of a British friend, Mike Leahy, he applied and got an opportunity at Radio Tircoed 106.5FM, in Swansea city to present a programme he developed called RIDE WITH ME. That experience constitutes one of his best memories as a broadcaster. Again, he was the first African to arrive the United Kingdom for the first time for studies, and had spent just a year, to anchor a live programme to the admiration of British listeners in Swansea. He was, indeed, an African’s pride in
Swansea. In January, 2014, he returned to Nigeria. Since then he has been an asset to the broadcasting industry and the academia. Niger Delta Television (NDTV), his first port of call on his return, where he initiated captivating programmes and masterminded the station’s first breakfast TV show, SERIDO, and FRCN’s Creek 106.5FM, Yenagoa, where he is also known as “The Smoothbuddy”, remain testimonials of his enviable dexterity in broadcasting. It is little wonder in 2016, he was awarded Best Newscaster Radio, and in 2021, Best Presenter Radio; thus, becoming a role model to aspiring broadcasters.
His passion for Creative Writing was fully activated with the launch of his critically acclaimed debut novel, THE DAY HEAVEN SLEPT, in 2017. Since then, he has continued to advocate the use of Creative Writing for educational, human and national development. This has resulted in his recent books: EXCUSE ME, I’M NOT ENGLISH, SAPRILO, THE BRAVE JOURNALIST and A NIGHT ON THE SUN, all published in
2020. He veered into the academia in 2019 and teaches Communication Skills in English at Bayelsa Medical University Yenagoa. In 2022, he bagged a PhD in English and Communication Art (Language option).
Still in 2022, his highly praised grammatical novel, EXCUSE ME, I’M NOT ENGLISH, received national recognition and recommendation for its content and contribution to knowledge. It was assessed by the Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC) and was found useful as a General Reading Material.
Dr Ikiemoye Iniamagha is a fervent Christian. He is married and blessed with children.