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Dr Lenrie Peters (1932-2009)
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Dr Lenrie Peters was born in 1932 in Bathurst (The Gambia). In 1956 he graduated with a B Sc. from the TRINITY College of Cambridge. From 1956 to 1959, he worked with the University College Hospital of London. In 1959, he received a Medical and Surgery diploma from Cambridge. He holds a Master’s degree in Arts. From 1954 to1955 he was the president of African Students’ Society of Cambridge. He worked as journalist of African programs with the BBC from 1955 to 1968. He was the president of the Historic Commission of Monuments of the Gambia and President of FESTAC comity in 1977. Mr Peters was the President of the board of directors of the National library of the Gambia and Gambia College from 1979 to 1987. From 1985 to 1991, he was a member and President of the West African Examination Council (WAEC). He was member of the jury for the Literary prize of the Commonwealth in 1995.
He passed away on 27 May 2009 in Dakar after a brief illness.

Famous quotes from Dr Lenrie Peters


It seems to me lunacy that we should expect (or believe in their pledges) that the United States, Britain, France or the U.S.S.R. should genuinely want to help us achieve economic parity or political equality. Not even if all the Messiahs were to come down and implore them. And why should they? (Présence Africaine 1980: 54)
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If, over the millennia, out of this human cradle in Central-Southern Africa evolved the great human civilizations — Chinese, Indian, Byzantine, Mediterranean, European and now the techno-European — what mutation, what aberration has connived to leave the black race out of this grand reckoning ? ((Présence Africaine 1980: 53)
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The cobra spits first to allow itself time to strike at chaos. Is it too much to hope that Africa, while raging with contempt, has the healing balm closely following? ((Présence Africaine N°117/118 1978: 167)
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Today, everyone is his brother's keeper, so send not to know for whom the bell tolls. Writers of Africa and Asia as they come together must recognize that their countries must take a large measure of responsibility for the wrongs which assail them. It is mere humbug to pretend that all our ills came borne on the forming nostrils of insane bulls from abroad. There is much we can do for ourselves which remain undone, much we can accomplish on which we turn our backs. (Ndaanan, Vol. 4, 1974: Pages 4-5)
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We are pledged as writers to reveal to our utmost capacity, the essence of the human condition, to illuminate the human spirit and in so doing to lift it out of the bondage of darkness and to drag it towards the light. Let us; let us move towards the light. (Ndaanan, Vol. 4, 1974: Pages 4-5)

Dr Lenrie Peters Gone Forever


Dr Lenrie Leopold Wilfred Peters has breathed his last on Wednesday 27 May 2009 at the Hôpital Dantec in Dakar at the age of 76, after a brief illness. Dr Peters, a poet surgeon, has published several works: poems, articles, short stories, film scripts and a novel. Unfortunately, prior to the demise of this literary giant and the trailblazer of Gambian literature, a translation of a selection of his poems was under publication as well as a special peer-reviewed journal on his works. This was meant to accompany a special honour on his behalf. We know that we have no powers over our lives.On behalf of the GAMWRITERS editorial board, I extend my condolences to the Peters family. May his soul rest in perfect peace!