On 5 March 2020, AfREC co-convened the WA launch of new book Gibbous Moon Over Lagos: Pursuing a Dream on Africa’s Wild Side by Pamela Watson. For the launch at UWA, AfREC partnered with the Nigerian Association of Western Australia (NAWA), Organisation of African Communities in WA, and Hardie Grant Books. Following introductory remarks by AfREC Director Dr David Mickler, NAWA President Dr Pedus Eweama, OACWA Research Director Dr Dominic Dagbanja, and Mr Martin Imonitie, Ms Watson presented her new book including reading several passages and sharing insights and experiences of both her time in Lagos and on the writing process. Following a lively audience Q&A with Ms Watson moderated by Dr Bisi Imonitie, the event concluded with book sales and signings, and networking while sharing Nigerian food provided by NAWA.
“Australian born Pamela Watson shot to fame when she wrote about her solo cycling adventure across Africa in her memoir Esprit De Battuta: Alone Across Africa on a Bicycle, a 14,500 kilometre journey through 17 countries (from Dakar, Senegal to Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania). Years later Pamela embarked on a thrilling five-year entrepreneurial journey in the turbulent African city of Lagos. She went onto create a successful management consultancy and hand-made paper social enterprise, became Australia’s Honorary Consul and was proud to make a difference to an embattled community.
Her new book Gibbous Moon Over Lagos details this next African adventure, one of surviving and thriving in a very different country including discovering the human side of a corrupt system that threatened her business dream. Pamela’s electrifying tale from Africa’s commercial capital, which is set to become the world’s third largest city by 2050, shines a light on the city contradictions - as full of opportunity as it is of hazards, as exciting as it is frustrating. This is not the Africa of open plains of the Serengeti or the thunderous white cloud of Victoria Falls. This is Africa’s wild side, a place where ethics can be lost and yet enormous good can be done as Lagosians are determinedly chasing dreams and opportunities in this untamed environment.
Pamela Watson is an intrepid adventurer and businesswoman. Born in Perth, she grew up watching the sun setting in the west and as an adult followed its pathway to Africa. From her intoxicating solo cycle journey across Africa in the nineties (detailed in Esprit de Battuta), her thrilling entrepreneurial and diplomatic adventures in Nigeria (the subject of Gibbous Moon Over Lagos) and travels to 32 countries in Africa, she has always followed her ambition, signed up for adventure and taken the steep learning curves along the way.”