Twambilire Ng’ambi, a Form Three student at Kaseye Girls Secondary School in Chitipa, was all smiles when she was named the overall winner in the Malawi Writer’s Union (Mawu) Northern Chapter short story competition for secondary school students.
The competition was organised by the union as part of its efforts in promoting a reading and writing culture in the country.
Speaking during the ceremony hosted by Mzuzu University(Mzuni), chairperson of the organising committee, Mashallo Samilo, expressed concern over the dwindling interest in creative writing in the country.
“It is a concern that this is the status quo despite an enabling environment for writers since multiparty democracy,” he said.
Samilo said this is one of the reasons Mawu sort sponsorship to conduct the competition.
The short story writing competition was sponsored by Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) to the tune of K150 000.
Announcing the prizes, the competition’s chief judge Wesley Macheso, who is also a lecturer in literature and creative writing at Mzuni, commended the participants for coming up with stories of superior quality. He said: “The winning story, A Better World, was well written and it gives insight into the central character’s troubled mind with such honesty that one can relate with her and her abusive past.”
Macheso also commended MRA for helping hand in promoting writing in the country.
The event was graced by Mzuzu City Council deputy mayor Alexander Mwakikunga, who encouraged the students to write and read more to improve themselves and the world around them.
The second prize winner was Chisomo Katchere from Mzuzu Government Secondary School and the third prize went to Tamika Chavinda from Mzuzu International Academy.
The winners went home with cash prizes, certificates of recognition, and copies of Wesley Macheso’s young adult novel, Akuzike and the Gods, which won the Peer Gynt Literary Award in 2015. n