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Meet writer Kumasashe Yaakugh who published her new novella While She Slept


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“Books Saved Me in My Darkest Times”: Meet Writer Kumashe Yaakugh Who Wrote 1st Novel While She Slept

  •’s fashion and lifestyle editor, Kumashe Yaakugh, finally took her love for writing up a notch by publishing her first novella, While She Slept
  • The 30-year-old writer from Benue state got inspired to finally tell a story that touched on her fellow Tiv people
  • In this exclusive interview with’s Taiwo Owolawi, Kumashe talks on her background, how books saved her life, and more

Nigerian writer and’s top fashion and lifestyle editor, Kumashe Yaakugh, recently released her first ever hard copies of her published work, While She Slept, and has taken us on a journey on how it all started.

The budding writer, while speaking during an exclusive interview with’s Taiwo Owolawi, explained how her journey to becoming a published author began.

The 30-year-old writer who is a graduate of Mass Communication from Benue State University explained that she enjoys reading and writing fiction during her spare time.'s fashion and lifestyle editor Kumashe Yaakugh publishes new book While She Slept.
Meet’s fashion and lifestyle editor Kumashe Yaakugh who published her new book, While She Slept. Photos: Kumashe Yaakugh.

Source: UGC

According to Kumashe, she has always been a great lover of written art and even toyed with the notion of becoming a writer herself. However, she never gave it serious thought until she stumbled on a book by Sally Kenneth Dadzie, who later became her favourite Nigerian writer.

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The young lady explained that Dadzie had written about a Tiv character in a particular book and it made her feel seen because an author had written about someone from her tribe.

She said:

“I stumbled on a book by a lady who is now my favourite Nigerian writer, Sally Kenneth Dadzie. In that book, there was a Tiv character and I remember how happy I was reading about someone from my tribe. I felt seen in a way. It was such a beautiful feeling. So, it made me wonder why there weren’t a lot of writers from my ethnic group in the literary world. I decided that rather than wait to read stories about Tiv characters, I’d write them.”

I grew up in a family of readers

Kumashe went ahead to speak on how her writing skill was also influenced by her family. According to her, she grew up in a family of readers where her parents had made it a point for reading to be a habit that she and her siblings cultivated.

The While She Slept author explained that while growing up, her mum was an avid reader and her dad often got her encyclopaedias for her to come up with 10 new words every week.

She also said:

“Growing up, I often saw my mum read loads of novels. It made me curious and sort of encouraged me to go hunting for adventures in books. Till date, whenever she comes visiting, the first place she goes to is my library!”

About While She Slept

Kumashe then spoke on her latest book, While She Slept, which she described as a paranormal thriller.

According to her, the book is about a 25-year-old character, Tarfa, who discovered he was from a family of ghost whisperers and a lady, Lily, who is stuck between life and death because of her psychotic brother, Bishop, who is out for revenge on his adoptive family.

Kumashe added that before she wrote While She Slept, she had tried her hands at the romance genre. However, she now wanted to write something totally different but with a bit of romance in it.

In her words:

“Before this book, I dabbled mostly in the romance genre because love makes the world so much better! I wanted to write something totally different and even though there’s a bit of romance in the book, While She Slept is mostly a paranormal thriller book. It isn’t my first published work but it is the project I decided to put out physical copies.”

I wanted to write a story that showcased my culture

The While She Slept book, which was mainly about a ghost, was born out of Kumashe’s desire to challenge herself while also showcasing her Tiv culture.

According to the author, she had just finished a writing course when she decided to work on the book. However, before then, she had written mostly series on her blog and working on a proper book meant a great deal to her.

Kumashe explained that while she has never had encounters with ghosts, writing about them also came from her love for crime and paranormal TV shows.

She said:

“Writing about ghosts came from my love for crime and paranormal TV shows. But these were mostly western TV. So, I was curious about writing a story, but making it African and most importantly, one that showcases my culture.”

Not stopping there, Kumashe explained her passion for promoting African culture and it influenced her writing of While She Slept.

“Since I decided to take my writing seriously, I’ve been reading a lot of books by African authors and listening to a wide range of African music, especially traditional ones. I’m very passionate about culture promotion and these things influence my writing, at least this book. And with writing romance, I consume mostly romance books, films and love songs. It puts my mind in the right space to really get to work”, she said.

Kumashe also spoke on how she drew courage from a number of Nigerian writers after reading their works. According to her, it is amazing that nobody tries to fit them into a box.

“I’ve spent more years as a reader than a writer and I must say, I’ve read loads of brilliant books by Nigerian authors. The amazing thing is, no one is trying to fit into one box; everyone is creating their own paths and making a name for themselves as they go. I’ve drawn courage from a lot of these writers as they have inspired me in more ways than one on the importance of being authentic and not playing to the gallery”, she said.

In my darkest times, books saved me – Kumashe speaks on what will be the peak of her career

The While She Slept author, just like many other writers, found an escape in books. According to the 30-year-old, the peak of her career would be changing people’s lives with her worlds because books saved her during her darkest times.

She said:

“The peak of my career as a writer would be knowing that a book I wrote changed lives for the better. Books have always been a form of escapism for me. In my darkest times, books saved me. So, to know that my book changed lives; you know, did that for someone else will make me feel even more grateful for the gift of writing. And of course, to one day win a Pulitzer Prize won’t hurt either. Haha!”

Writing a book is easy until you decide to write one

Also during the interview, Kumashe admitted to feeling proud about writing While She Slept. According to her, she had challenged herself in 2020 to put out a full-length book as opposed to her previously written short works, Tana’s Fate and Picture Perfect, which were romance books.

She said:

“I decided that I was going to do something different from what I was used to. I must say, it was a learning experience for me because I went into it with the belief that it wasn’t going to be difficult. I was wrong. Writing a book is easy until you decide to write one. The process was challenging and there were times I thought of giving up and just shelving it. So, to have it published now and out there means a lot to me. I am glad I didn’t give up on it. It was quite an experience writing this book and I am happy to share it with the world.”

Kumashe speaks on future plans

The published author noted that While She Slept is not the last the world will hear of her works. According to her, she is currently working on a romance book which should be out sometime in 2023.

She said:

“I intend to put out a lot of books. Currently, I’m working on a romance book which will come out sometime this year, 2023.”


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Obaseki’s Edo PDP Faction wins Supreme Court Judgement



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BREAKING: Jubilation as Court Gives Final Verdict on Powerful PDP Gov’s Case in Top Southern State

  • On Wednesday, the Supreme Court dismissed Dan Orbih’s Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) faction’s appeal, which sought to challenge the party primaries that produced the current Edo state governor, Godwin Obaseki.
  • The appeal against the emergence of Godwin Obaseki was declared inadmissible by a five-judge court panel
  • Justice Centus Nweze observed in the main judgment that an appeal must be based on grounds presented to the lower court for it to be eligible for review

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Governor Godwin Obaseki has reacted to the Supreme Court Verdict on the Edo Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) crisis.

On Wednesday, February 1st, 2023, Obaseki described the ruling as “No Victor, No vanquished” and called on all party members and Edo people to unite with the party and government to rescue Nigeria.

Supreme Court, Edo PDP crisis, Governor Godwin Obaseki, 2023 elections, APC
Obaseki reacts to Supreme Court’s judgement. Photo credit: Governor Godwin Obaseki

Source: Facebook

Obaseki lauds Supreme Court’s recent judgement

Obaseki in a statement shared on his Facebook page and sighted by, on Wednesday night, said,

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“The ruling of the Supreme Court today, finally put to rest the long-drawn legal tussle over the candidates that will fly the flag of our great party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Edo State in the general election on the 25th of February and 11th of March 2023.

“As the leader of the party in the State, I implore all members to consider this development as the end of all strife within the Edo PDP and to note that this is a victory for all members. Our resolve now is to win the forthcoming general elections as this experience has made us stronger and better prepared to clinch victory.”

2023: Why tough time awaits Oshiomhole in February over his senatorial ambition

Meanwhile, Adams Oshiomhole, the former national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and ex-Governor of Edo state, would be facing a tough time in the February 25 national assembly election.

Oshiomhole is contesting for Edo north senatorial seat in the forthcoming election but his major contender is a former political ally.

Also, because there won’t be a governorship election in the state, the central stage for the 2023 election in the state is the national assembly election.


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Panic 2 PDP governors apart from Wike’s camp reportedly threaten to dump Atiku



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More Trouble for Atiku as 2 PDP Governors Apart from Wike's Camp Reportedly Set to Dump Him

A few weeks before the 2023 general election, there are speculations that two Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governors, apart from the G5 group, are threatening to withdraw their support for the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.

The national chairman of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Professor Rufai Ahmed Alkali, made the claim while addressing newsmen in Abuja on Tuesday, January 31.

He was reacting to Atiku’s claim that he was in talks with the NNPP presidential candidate.

“Five governors are not with Atiku. These governors are coming from powerful states. The two others have been sending messages that they will not support Atiku.

“We thought that anyone contesting an election should put his house together. We left the PDP because we knew it would implode. It is not the same party as yesterday. In the next one week, some will leave the PDP,” Alkali said.


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Breaking: It’s finally over as prominent G5 governor takes strong action against Atiku, PDP



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BREAKING: Governor Wike Takes Strong Action Against Atiku, PDP

  • The governor of Rivers state, Nyesom Wike, has withdrawn the approval he granted the PDP to use Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium for Atiku’s rally
  • Wike through a letter written by his sports commissioner and addressed to Governor Tambuwal gave the reason for his action
  • Meanwhile, the Rivers state chapter of the PDP said it is not surprised by the governor’s action and revealed its next step

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Port Harcourt, Rivers state – Governor Nyesom Wike has withdrawn the approval he granted the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Council to use the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium for Atiku Abubakar’s rally.

The Rivers state governor cancelled the approval in a letter dated Tuesday, January 31 written by the commissioner for sports, Christopher Green, The Nation reported.

Wike/Atiku/PDP Presidential Rally in Rivers/Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium
Governor Wike stops PDP presidential campaign council from using Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium for Atiku’s rally. Photo credit: Gov Nyesom Ezenwo Wike – CON

Source: Facebook gathers that the letter was addressed to Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto state, who is the director-general of the PDP Presidential Council.

PDP campaign allegedly planning to share venue with Rivers APC

The letter accused the Rivers Presidential Campaign Organisation of planning to share the use of the facility with a “faction of the All Progressives Congress (APC) led by Tonye Cole”.

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The letter said:

“Credible intelligence available to the government of Rivers State and recent developments now show that your Presidential Campaign Organisation is working in collaboration and in cahoot with a faction of the APC led by Tonye Patrick Cole and that it is the intention of your presidential campaign organisation to accommodate and share the approved facility for your campaign with the said faction of the APC.

“Government records show that the activities of the APC in Rivers have always been married by violence due largely to irreconcilable internal conflicts within the party including shootings and killings in the course of protest arising from the nomination process of delegates for primaries and detonation of explosives in the course of campaigns”.

The state government said it withdrew the approval because it would not risk damage to a state prized asset like the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium that could arise from the alleged planned collaboration with Toney Cole-led APC.

Rivers PDP reacts

Reacting, the spokesperson of the PDP Presidential Campaign Council in Rivers, Leloonu Nwibubase, confirmed the development.

He said the PDP was not surprised by Governor Wike’s action. According to him, the approval earlier granted by the Rivers state governor was a Greek gift.

“We will speak to the teeming PDP supporters and supporters of our presidential candidate in due course. We will continue with our campaign.

“We are very sure that the ultimate goal is for Rivers to vote Atiku Abubakar as their Presidential Candidate and that we will succeed. We will unveil our options,” he said.

PDP crisis worsens as Wike makes another strong allegation against Iyorchia Ayu

In another report, Governor Wike accused Iyorchia Ayu, the PDP national chairman, of ordering lawyers handling some of the party’s cases in Rivers state to withdraw their legal representations.

The Rivers governor described the alleged directive as anti-party, saying such acts would beget a corresponding reaction from the state chapter of the party.

He said this at the State School premises, Okehi 1, the venue of the Rivers state PDP campaign inauguration in Etche local government area on Monday, January 30.


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