FactCheck: False Plagiarism Accusations Against Chimamanda Adichie Not Recent, Already Decided by Court £250,000 in Damages Awarded”


Afeez Rabiu


There have been recent claims on social media about Chimamanda Adichie’s “Half of a Yellow Sun” being a plagiarized copy of Anne Giwa-Amu’s book SADE. The claim which has generated an enormous amount of reaction on various social media platforms has generated both political and tribal coated reactions.


The claim that Chimamanda Adichie plagiarized the book “SADE” for her novel “Half of a Yellow Sun” is not only false but also a resolved legal matter.


In 2016, a Nigerian author named Anne Giwa-Amu claimed that Adichie’s book was a copy of her own book titled “Sade: A Novel.” Giwa-Amu filed a lawsuit against Adichie, alleging copyright infringement and seeking damages of £500,000. However, in 2019, the UK High Court dismissed the case, ruling that Giwa-Amu’s claims were unfounded.

According to the ruling, there was no evidence to support Giwa-Amu’s claims of plagiarism. The court found that the two books were fundamentally different, with distinct plots, characters, and themes. The judge noted that “Half of a Yellow Sun” is a work of fiction that focuses on the Nigerian Civil War, while “Sade: A Novel” is a collection of poems that covers a broad range of themes.

The ruling also stated that Giwa-Amu’s claims were brought outside the statutory limitation period, which is six years from the date of the alleged infringement. The judge found that the alleged infringement, which was said to have occurred in 2008, was outside the limitation period and therefore, Giwa-Amu’s claim was time-barred.

In addition to dismissing the case, the court awarded Adichie £250,000 in damages to cover her legal costs. The judge ruled that Giwa-Amu’s conduct during the proceedings had been unreasonable and that she had brought a meritless claim that had wasted the court’s time and resources.

It is worth noting that this is not the first time that Adichie has faced allegations of plagiarism. In 2013, a blogger accused her of lifting several passages from a TED Talk by the Nigerian writer, Odia Ofeimun, without attribution. However, Adichie responded to the accusation, stating that she had credited Ofeimun in the book’s acknowledgments section and that the passages in question were common knowledge in Nigerian intellectual circles.


FactcheckElections can conclude that the claim that Chimamanda Adichie plagiarized the book “SADE” for her novel “Half of a Yellow Sun” is false and has been legally dismissed. The UK High Court found that there was no evidence to support the claim and awarded Adichie £250,000 in damages to cover her legal costs.  It is important to rely on credible sources and verified information when making claims or accusations.


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