Poetry: Exclusive Interview with renowned lawyer and poet, Obua Joseph Peter
Who is Obua Joseph Peter
My name is Obua Joseph Peter, a practising lawyer, a poet, and an Ibadan-based realtor although i’m from Imo State. I have been writing poems since my last year in secondary school 12 years ago.
What’s the drive behind your passion for poetry?
Poetry help me to relax and I express my feelings better with poetry right from when I was in secondary school in Lagos. My passion to impact lives through my poems which are mostly real-life experiences is my drive all the time.
How long have you been writing poems?
I started writing poems in 2009 after my literature teacher helped in discovering my interest in the genre of writing.
How many poems have you published?
I have published more than 250 poems and 8 anthologies( poetry collections) which includes “There is Tear in the Rain”, ” Love Chronicle”, “Escape” and the latest one is “Preacher of Love” amongst others. Most of my poems are trilogies. Apart from my published poems, I have over 8,000 poems that I’m yet to publish.
What are the challenges facing the writing industry in Nigeria today?
We have a lot of challenges facing writers in Nigeria with many of us (writers) lacking the channels to publish our work and get our due recognition. Nigeria lack structure for writers and that pose a strong financial hurdle in front of the writers except for the few ones with good social media presence and those who have the financial capability to fund the whole process.
What’s your biggest achievement since you delved into the writing industry?
I have many stand out moments since I started writing but one of the biggest was when I ranked number two in the world poetry ranking in 2018 on UiMe.Com. An internationally recognised website for ranking poets. Another big moment was when I won the Vanguard award for poetry in 2019 among other international awards. So far, I have sold over 100,000 copies of my poems (combined) and that is a huge one for me.
Where do you see yourself in few years as a writer?
My dream as a writer and poet is to be the second Nigerian after Prof Wole Soyinka to win the Nobel Prize in Literature. I want to continue impacting as many lives as possible with my poetry works.
What advice can you give to the Federal Govt of Nigeria in tackling the drop in the education sector in Nigeria?
The government at all level in Nigeria should give incentives to those men that are doing extraordinarily in the education/art sectors to motivate them just like they are doing with those entertainers and reality stars who get countless endorsements. It was recently that a governor doles out N10M to each musician in his state at an event while educationist and those in the literary art are poorly funded despite the important roles they are playing in shaping our society.
Apart from writing, what else are you into?
Apart from writing, I’m a real estate consultant, criminal and property law expert.