New Voices The Republic’s National Student Essay Writing Competition

We’re looking for new voices: What do you want Nigeria to be like in the future? How can Nigeria become the type of country you envision? 

In partnership with the Federal Government of Nigeria and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) towards launching the Imagine Nigeria report, The Republic is launching New Voices, a national essay competition open to students in Nigeria between the ages of 16 and 25.

Submissions for this competition are now open. Read the terms below:

Imagine the year is 2050 and you are in your ideal Nigeria. What does it feel like to live in that country? How do you think Nigeria can evolve into that future nation? 

With the largest African and Black population in the world, Nigeria is one of Africa’s most prominent nations. As a nation with strong potential, how can Nigeria evolve past its current challenges and develop into the nation of your dreams? 

Choose aspects of Nigeria that genuinely interest you, that you feel compelled to write about, and tell us about them in 600800 words. These could be personal or analytical essays, but they must clearly address an issue you feel passionate about. 

If you’re having trouble finding something particular that interests or inspires you, your essay could answer the following questions:

As a Nigerian, do you feel like you have a national identity? In your ideal Nigeria, what does national identity look like? What would we need to do today to get there? 

When you look at the people closest to you, are they enjoying or left out of the benefits of technology? What needs to happen in your ideal Nigeria for technology to create and spread more prosperity? 

What do you find interesting about the school or university you go to and what would you change to make it even better? What excites you about the future of your school, university or education more broadly? 

Have you or anyone close to you experienced the impacts of climate change? What do people get wrong about climate change and, in your ideal Nigeria, what would we be paying more attention to?  

What do you wish more people knew about the level of security in your community? Do you and your neighbours feel safe? Have you or your community tried to do something about it, to achieve your ideal Nigeria? What can Nigerians learn from your experience?

The winning essay will be published on The Republic’s website, and the authors of the top three essays will receive N500,000, N250,000 and N150,000 in respective cash prizes in total, with the winning entry published on our website. The names of our top-ten finalists will be published online, with each finalist receiving a year-long print and digital subscription to The Republic. Only one submission is allowed per writer and shortlisted entrants will need to provide a referee from their school/university that can confirm their student status.

We will select the best essays based on the originality and strength of the authors’ voices, the knowledge and passion they show towards the issues they care about and quality of their writing. Selection decisions are incontestable.

The deadline for submissions is noon (WAT) 30 September 2022. After the deadline, the submission form will be closed, and you will not be able to submit your essay. Please keep this in mind and submit before the deadline

SUBMISSION FORM