I have received torrents of emails from readers on the above subject. I have reproduced only a representative sample below. I will comment one more time on this topic next week and then move on. Happy Sallah in arrears!
My good friend Prof Wolf Lepenies—you can google him (we got our GCE together 50 years ago)—who has taught at Princeton University and other places, and who has founded the Berlin and Budapest scholarly fora, is also a member of the Swedish Academy, which mails those proposals, as he just informed me, after sending him your piece on intellectual 419-ers.
"I now know what I have to do!" he wrote to me textually. But I DO think that giving Nobels to the two Os is 'too small': Nigeria should be ranked number OBE on the UN performance list, for not only performing marvelously well with her LOOOTOCRAZY but also by entertaining us with such clowns as the two Os.!!! THANK you for informing me - and I keep laffin'
Gerd Meuer, Germany (GerdMeuer@t-online.de)
I just read your article about the intellectual fraud of Philip Emeagwali and Gabriel Oyibo. It is a good write up. I happened to be one of the first people who brought the intellectual fraud of Dr. Oyibo to limelight when it was unpopular in Nigeria to do so. I was asked to review his GAGUT documentary that I was invited to see at his producer's house in New York in 2005 for the Guardian newspaper.
I wrote a review that was critical and they wanted to change it but I resisted it. Nevertheless, I published the review in Nigeriaworld.com, and I passed it along to my friend Sowore who published it on Elendureports, and Nigeriavillagesquare as well. Surprisingly, I suspect, Laolu Akande whom I have known for a long time asked Dr. Oyibo's documentary producer to write a rejoinder to criticize my review. It was titled "Rebuttal to Ademola Bello's Critical Review of GAGUT's Documentary' by Clemson Brown. It was published in Nigeriavillagesquare, Nigeriaworld, and Laolu Akande's website.
Although, I was also threatened and also wanted to be bribed at the same time, to change the bad review and write a positive one but I refused to compromise. The good news that came out of this silly thing is that Sowore and I were able to stop then President Obasanjo and Nigerian Senate from rewarding Dr. Gabriel Oyibo with undeserved $1million prize. Can you imagine? Nigerian Senate passed a resolution sponsored by Jibril Aminu and co that Federal government should create Africa's Nobel Prize valued at more than one million dollars and Dr. Oyibo should be the first recipient of the award for his GAGUT theorem? And his intention was to distribute copies of the review of GAGUT documentary that he thought was going to be positive to Nigerian Senators who will help make his case-but things didn't work out for him.
Ademola Bello (email@example.com)
I am indeed very happy for the good work done by Farooq especially the true statement of fact that Emeagwali has done more harm than good to the image of Nigeria. I published a story sometime ago on Phillip Emeagwali in a page on our online magazine tagged "Nigerians In Diaspora" and the searchlight was beamed on Emeagwali.
To my utter dismay, a woman purported by Phillip Emeagwali to be his wife, which in fact I got the picture from Emeagwali`s website, wrote to me through my mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) and told me point blank that I should remove her picture from the magazine website and that she was never a wife of Phillip Emeagwali. I had a series of correspondence with the woman who indeed is a Professor of African Studies at Connecticut State University in America. Her name is Prof. Mrs Gloria Emeagwali. I have all the facts with me and am willing to give it out to any reasonable Nigerian who cares about the truth. When I contacted Seye Kehinde (City People Magazine Publisher) and he was not keen on the story, I took the story to Sun Newspapers office around Mile 2 area of Lagos State and I met with one of the editors for onward publication.
Further contacts were made with Phillip Emeagwali in USA and he could not refute the woman`s assertion. Till now, Sun Newspaper has not published the story. It all happened about a year ago and the Prof Mrs Gloria Emeagwali was really interested in having me publish the story in a Nigeria national paper. I published it in our online magazine then and the woman was very appreciative. She said Phillip Emeagwali has been a mischievous human being and that his misdemeanor is not known by many.
Ladi Jolaosho (email@example.com)
Thanks, Farooq, for the article. I don’t know you and I do not know if you are ethnically biased but I think your piece is the truth. We must not shy away from it notwithstanding whose ox is gored. I think it might also help to write about honest Nigerians who are really doing great work out there in the diaspora and celebrate them. When I was working on a project thesis, I came across these Nigerians and the link to the Howard University sites where the work is http://cancer.howard.edu/research/faculty.htm
All the best,
Ogechukwu Egini (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Farooq, good work, nice column. I believe with people like you doing good job such as this one, the likes of Emeagwali will be exposed to the world. After doing some internet research about him, I found out that the man has penetrated almost everywhere with his intellectual fraud. If you have time, please checkout YouTube and you will come across quite a number of videos of him giving speeches and lectures at different locations globally.
I also read that he was once described by former President Bill Clinton as one of the great minds of the information age. One question which I still can’t find an answer to is, why did it take so long for this guy to be exposed? The guy is not preaching about his claims of being "father of the internet,” professor of bla bla etc only in Nigeria/Africa where I believe the majority of the people don't care, but he is doing that almost everywhere in the world. How come he was never reported by either the IEEE or the ACM that his claims were wrong?
Moha M. Buhari (email@example.com)