People of the City’ is What’s On Africa’s version of the Proust questionnaire. We ask exciting people across the city a series of questions. They can answer as seriously or as flippantly as they like. Expect by the end, to have a slightly more personal connection with interesting personalities doing innovative things.

This week, WOA connected with the spoken word poet Dylema, a Nigerian London based poet from London. Her performances and subject choice are potent and moving, often performing to live instrumentation across many London venues. The 24 year old is also a brilliant author writing and self publishing the self help relationship book %99 Woman. Read on to find out more!


How did you get here?

I have never been asked this! But I think regardless of however I got here I’m supposed to cause a storm before I go back.

Who would you snog, marry or avoid

Snog JME, marry Skepta and avoid Jammer.

What advice would you give to a younger you?

Pick a struggle, know everything there is to know about that struggle and work through it every single day.

Which living person do you most admire?

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s ever happened to you?

That time I forgot my poetry verse in stage – I nearly died.

Are you scared of death?

No, I don’t see the point in fearing anything inevitable.

Which film character do you most identify with? And why?

Celie from colour purple because she was an underdog that eventually won. I feel like an underdog sometimes and hope i’ll win some day too.

Name one book you think everyone should read?

My book 99% Woman it is about the relationship percentage formula; what is the percentage of give and take in your relationship and understanding why certain relationships just don’t work.

What has been the peak and pit of your day?

This is a really yogi -type answer but I don’t judge if my day is bad or good, I see what ever happens in my day as events aiding me towards my purpose.

What’s your walking style?


What’s trending for you?

Spoken word poetry.

Who is in the party in your head?

My hero’s,  Nina Simone,  May Angelou, Chimamanda Adichie, Oprah Winfrey.

If you could change one thing?

I would change the thing I work every day to constantly change: the world’s subtle negative perception of women as property before people.

Who would you vote for as president of the United States of Africa?

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie,  although I don’t want her to be stressed!

What’s the most unwise purchase you’ve ever made?

A book about tanning (I know… I was curious)

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Yop yogurt drink and Puff Puff (Nigerian dumpling).

Dylema is a spoken word poet from East London. Born and raised in West Africa Nigeria, Dylema uses her experiences growing up in a traditional African household as an only girl among 4 boys, to cultivate inspiring and entertaining spoken word poetry. She has teamed up with some musicians under the name ‘The Dylema Collective’  fusing spoken word and neo soul /  jazz sounds. She aims to be the voice for women like herself, speaking out on matters that lack real representation. Take a look at an example of her work on Youtube ‘What If A Black Girl knew’ . She tweets @Dylema_



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