Deputy Minister of Labour Vera Kamtukule has encouraged young people in the country to write more to inspire their own change.
The deputy minister made the call on Saturday at Crossroads Hotel in Lilongwe when she presided over the launch of a children’s book titled The Missing Meteorite by 20-year-old Lindsay Katchika-Jere.
“I am so inspired by Lindsay who wrote this book The Missing Meteorite. Though it is fiction, the book talks about the little girl, Thoko, who speaks out against injustice over the stolen meteriote,” she said.
Kamtukule said in Malawi, there have been several abuses such as sexual violence targeting girls, but it is sad that most of the victims do not speak out.
“They suffer in silence. So, this book is giving the youth a platform to express themselves while shaping their own future,” the deputy minister, who is also an author, said.
On her part, Katchika-Jere said she was excited to launch her debut book which is part of a series titled The Adventures of Thoko.
She said she penned the book after being inspired by her life’s struggles.
“I faced a lot of obstacles in my life but I couldn’t surrender my dream until I graduated at African Bible College. So, my story centres on the meteorite that fell in Machinga in 1981 and is now in museum,” she said.
Katchika-Jere, however, urged fellow youths to participate in the development of the country while promoting culture.
Malawi Writers Union (Mawu) presidential aspirant Chikumbutso Ndaferankhande hailed the book launch as impressive.
“This is a big milestone not only in the life of 20-year-old author Lindsay, but also the entire Mawu family. We look forward to seeing more such acts from different writers in our pursuit to resuscitate a reading culture,” he said.
During the launch, Kamtukule bought a copy of the book at K50 000.
In The Missing Meteorite, Thoko, a young girl passionate about meteorites, visits Chichiri Museum to see a real meteorite. Unfortunately, the meteorite has been stolen. Disappointed and sad, Thoko decides to investigate the case. She discovers a secret that lands her in great trouble. Overcoming all odds, Thoko is able to report the situation to authorities, leading to the arrest of the suspected thieves. The whistleblower, Thoko, is rightfully honoured as a hero.