The year 2020 is what everyone agrees hasn’t been an easy year. It is the very definition of what doesn’t kill you making you stronger. Between the high notes of upheaval and devastation, this year has felt like a baptism of fire, but it has also cradled hope alongside grief.

At the onset of the lockdown across Nigeria due to the Covid-19 pandemic, LGBT women, men, and coalitions looked out for the most vulnerable in our community. Individuals reached out to LGBT platforms and volunteered to lighten the toll of the pandemic on queer people hard-hit by the lockdown.

In the face of uncertainty, we reminded each other that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. In showing up for one another, we affirmed our preciousness, that we mattered because we matter to each other.

When our deepest instincts for comfort in one another proved lethal, queer people found ways to amuse and challenge themselves. New comedic acts flooded social media, podcasts went live that celebrated the richness of queer lives, the fashion gays gave us runway realness, sun-kissed from their bedrooms, and, between the skincare and MUA gays, we learned to get rid of acne and use a bronzer. The lesbian romance film, Ife, was shot and released. Life was given and we sustained community in spite of the distance necessary to stall the pandemic’s rampage.

And that wasn’t all.

The week-long virtual pride event, Pride Afrique, was held in August: the first of its kind. The afro-pop star Simi publicly apologised to the Nigerian LGBT community for homophobic comments she made on her “Stoopid” show – another first. The Rustin Times released the documentary, Defiance: Voices of a New Generation. Activist Matthew Blaise and vlogger Amara, among others, gave us some of the most rousing and inspiring iconographies of the #EndSARS protests, holding up placards and bearing witness: “QUEER NIGERIAN LIVES MATTER.”

2020, for all its many lows, has also had its share of pivotal moments, and for the second edition of our annual literary prize, henceforth named the Kito Diaries Prize For Writing, there is no theme more fitting and resonant than “Queer Nigerian Lives Matter.”

They always have and always will.

For this sophomore edition of the competition, interested members of the community would be required to send in any piece of writing – fiction (not more than 2,500 words), nonfiction (not more than 1,500 words) or poetry (not more than 2 pages) – on the theme: Queer Nigerian Lives Matter. You may interpret the theme broadly.



1. Font should be Times New Roman, 12 pt., and, with the exception of poetry, double-spaced.

2. Only the title of the story should be at the head of the entry. Do not put your name anywhere on your entry.

3. Send your entry to The subject of the mail should be: QUEER NIGERIAN LIVES MATTER.

4. In the body of the email, state your name and social media handle (Facebook or Instagram).

5. Deadline for entries is December 30, 2020.



The top four winners will get cash prizes.

First prize: N60, 000

Second prize: N50, 000

Third prize: N40, 000

Fourth prize: N30, 000

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1 Comment

  1. Mikey😘
    December 01, 11:15 Reply

    Wow how come I’ve never heard of this

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