Another Oddity. September 10, 2009

What looks like a new miniature sheet, 30.5 cm by 20.0 cm, has surfaced. It consists of portraits of sixteen Nobel Prize winners, on stamps of 150pt denomination, together with nine labels. Two of them show the Nobel medal, two se-tenant illustrate a map of Africa, one shows the logo of the Pan African Postal Union (PAPU), and the final block of four says, in Arabic and English, 4th Extra Ordinary session of PAPU Plenipotentiary Conference Cairo 1-9 June 2009.

The 28th Ordinary Session of PAPU's Administrative Council also took place in Cairo during June 6-7. The PAPU meeting was chaired by the Egyptian Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Dr Tarek Kamel.

The 7th Ordinary Session of the PAPU Plenipotentiary Conference had been held in Cairo the previous year, on 28 - 29 June, for which Egypt issued a stamp on June 28, 2008.

It might be of interest to philatelists to read Point 8 of the 2008 PAPU report:

8. Report of the Commemorative Postage Stamps Issued by Member Countries (Doc No 06/PAPU/CP/VII/2008) The Conference took note of the report presented by the General Secretariat of the Union, on the issuance of a Commemorative Postage Stamp and requested member-countries to issue commemorative postage stamps on 18th January every year to mark the African Post Day celebration and remit 30% of the proceeds to the General Secretariat.

Of more immediate interest is an announcement on eBay by a collector offering this new sheet for sale, which states:

Very rare withdrawn 4th Extra Ordinary Session of PAPU Plenipotentiary Conference Cairo 1-9 June 2009 .......Known as NOBEL SHEET because all the persons it contains are Nobel prize winners and not one of them belongs to this conference and that is why the sheet was withdrawn.

Other comments include:

Only 5000 printed, already sold out....

So not just another "Egyptian funny". But at least this sheet is not being offered at some ridiculous starting price, like the last withdrawn stamp.

We await events and news to unfold completely, without bated breath. But if members, especially our Egyptian ones, do have any further knowledge please let us know.

1951 Max Theiler (South Africa); 1960 Albert Luthuli (South Africa); 1978 Anwar al-Sadat (Egypt); 1979 Alan Cormack (South African); 1984 Tutu (South Africa); 1988 Naguib Mahfouz (Egypt); 1986 Wole Soyinka (Nigeria); 1991 Nadine Gordimer (South Africa); 1993 F. W. de Klerk (South Africa); 1993 Nelson Mandela (South Africa); 1999 Ahmed H. Zewail (Egypt) ; 2001 Kofi Atta Annan (Ghana) ; 2002 Sydney Brenner (South African); 2003 John Maxwell Coetzee (South Africa); 2004 Wangari Maathai (Kenya); 2005 El Baradei (Egypt).