Despite the global pandemic, the 4th edition of the ‘Tell Your Own Story’ National Book Awards kicked off on Christmas Eve with the event hosting enthusiastic Zambian writers from all parts of the country with each one of them anxiously waiting on who was going to take the night.
Hosted at the Confucius Institute at the University of Zambia in Lusaka on the 24th of December 2021, the event hosted 94 attendees among them Unicaf University in Zambia Vice Chancellor, Dr. Christine Mushibwe, who was guest speaker at the ceremony.
The evening unfolded with jubilant announcements of the nominees and winners in various categories.
Speaking after the presentation of the awards, Unicaf University in Zambia Vice Chancellor, Dr Christine Mushibwe, encouraged the authors to continue thriving so that the creative industry can continue to grow in the country.
The event also included a mini book expo to showcase the books by several Zambian authors most of whom were nominated at the awards ceremony. Other exhibitors at the awards included Unicaf University in Zambia which was the only university that showcased their products and services.
Also present at the ceremony were Mr. Daniel Kabani CEO of DNK Group, Mr. Mwila Bwanga CEO of Be Relevant, Mr. Aaron Chansa Executive Director, National Action for Quality Education Zambia (NAQEZ), Mr. Dumisani L. Ncube, CEO DLN Technologies and Zambian football legend, Christopher Katongo.
Some recipients of the awards included writer Mazuba Mwiinga who won the Best Non-Fiction for his authoring of the ‘Midnight Raid – Hakainde’s Taste of Hate.’ Fr Francis Katuta was the recipient of the Best Religious Award, and Keith Hamusute took home the Best Fiction Award for ‘The Ghosts Came for Dinner and Left’.
Highflying businessman and CEO of DLN enterprises Dumisani Ncube nabbed the Bestselling Author of 2021, while Raphael Mbewe was presented with the Most Outstanding Author. Other recipients at the ceremony were Samuel Zulu who won for Best Creative Writing, Sheila Siwela for Best Children, Reuben Phiri for Best Poetry, Best History Mutale Kaunda, Best Business was awarded to Brighton Mwanza, and the Most Influential Author 2021 received by Isaac Pomboloka. In total 13 authors walked away with awards.
With the growing literature industry in Zambia, many authors and writers have had to find various means of storytelling able to showcase their creativity. The Tell Your Own Story National Book Awards were launched with the aim of pioneering change within the writing industry in Zambia and to ensure that Zambian authors can turn this industry into an income generating sector for author’s sustainable development.
Written by Niza Salome Nayame