Adichie’s literary agents respond to Giwa-Amu’s plagiarism claim

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Anne Giwa Amu
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Anne Giwa Amu

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s literary agents, Wylie Agency, has denied allegation by Anne Giwa-Amu that ‘Half of A Yellow Sun’ was plagiarised.

In its statement, the Wylie Agency said in 2016, Anne Giwa-Amu brought a legal claim against Adichie and her publishers where the former alleged that Adichie’s 2006 novel, ‘Half of a Yellow Sun,’ had plagiarized her 1996 novel titled ‘Sade.’ A professional independent reader was appointed to read both novels and that reader concluded that there was “absolutely no basis for Giwa-Amu’s claim and advised that the claim should not be pursued.”

It went further to explain that Giwa-Amu nevertheless continued with the claim but was struck out on 15 February 2019 by the court. That the court determined that her claim was ‘an abuse of its process’ and “ordered Giwa-Amu to pay Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and her publishers the sum of £14,250, which Giwa-Amu failed to pay. The court also ordered Giwa-Amu to pay the legal costs Adichie incurred in defending her baseless claim. Till date, Giwa-Amu has not paid the money.”

Wylie Agency described Giwa-Amu’s allegation as “delusional,” also as “false, libellous” and “a harassment” to Adichie and said further legal actions are being taken.

Meanwhile, in a Facebook post published on March 17, Giwa-Amu wrote that her claim for copyright infringement against the Wylie Agency, UK, was issued on January 25 2017 in the Intellectual Property and Enterprise Court in London. “The Wylie Agency are the literary agents to Chimamanda Adichie, Biyi Bandele and the late Chinua Achebe. As such they cannot claim to have instructed a professional ‘independent’ reader. If the claim had been heard both parties would have had to agree to an expert report. This did not happen and it is the first I have heard of any professional independent reader.

“Also, this article gives the impression that the court advised me not to continue with this claim. This is false. It is correct that an irrational cost order was imposed against me. It was irrational as the judge had held that Adichie had not been correctly served with the claim form by the court. It is illegal for the court to impose costs in favor of someone who is not party to the action.”


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