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Etisalat Prize For Literature :Set To Promote Talented African Writers

L-R): Head, High Value Events & Sponsorship,
Etisalat Nigeria, Ebi Atawodi; Patron, Etisalat Prize for Literature, Dele
Olojede; Chair of Judges, Etisalat Prize for Literature, Pumla Gqola and Chief
Executive Officer, Etisalat Nigeria, Steven Evans, at the Etisalat Prize for
Literature Press Conference, held at Wheatbaker Hotel, Ikoyi, Lagos.

 The Etisalat Prize for Literature was launched in Lagos on June 5, to further boost African Literature and the publishing industry, promote young writers and foster value recognition.

Established as a platform to promote creativity and excellence in writing
across Africa,
Chief Executive Officer, Etisalat Nigeria, Mr
Steven Evans said that the Prize was created to give recognition to indigenous
works of literature, while also
rewarding new entrants and encouraging further

have initiated this important project to celebrate literary excellence and
creativity in Nigeria and across Africa. We believe literature has the
potential to effect
change and serve as a catalyst for promoting a cultural revolution,”
he said.

The Etisalat Prize for
has been described as the first ever
pan-African prize to appreciate first time writers of published fiction novels.
The prize will bring together
high profile writers, book critics and academics from across the
continent and beyond, to
identify new writers of African descent
irrespective of where they are resident.

qualifications demand that works must be the writer’s first fiction novel of
over 30,000 words and which has been published in the last twenty-four months. 

Entries for the Fiction
Novel category opened on June 5, to publishers who have published a minimum of five
authors in the last three years. All entries will be vetted and scrutinized by
a panel of four preselected judges chaired by Pumla Gqola, associate professor
in the Department of African Literature at the University of the Witwatersrand
(South Africa) and of South Africa’s most celebrated intellectuals.

Other judges are Zaks
Professor of
Creative writing at the University of Ohio and winner of the Commonwealth
Prize, Billy Kahora, Managing Editor of Kwani Trust,
of the literary
Journal Kwani and
Sarah Ladipo Manyika,
writer and academic. These judges will work together to select the long list as
well as a shortlist of three novels and finally the winner who will be
announced in February 2014.

The two categories in
which the Prize will be awarded are: the best full-length debut novel, with a
minimum of 30,000 words published in English in the last 24 months, and for the
best flash fiction work of less than 300 words ( also in English).

During the
proramme launch,  Gqola, disclosed that
the Prize winner of the first category will be awarded a cash prize of £
15,000; A Samsung Galaxy Note or iPad; Etisalat-sponsored book tour( book
reading/singing) in three major cities; Scholarship/Fellowship at the
University of East Anglia( a prominent school for creative writing) and an
Etisalat-engraved Montblanc  Pen.
Mr Evans also stated that 1000 copies of the winning book will be purchased by Etisalat, and distributed to schools across Nigeria.

the winner in the second category will get a £1,000 cash prize; a Samsung
Galaxy Note or iPad; and published e-book promoted online and via SMS.
  1. Unknown says

    This is a great initiative…kudos to etisalat.


  2. Anonymous says

    This is a step in the best interest of Africans, especially Nigerians, who take value seriously. Etisalat has done well to make this kind of platform for excellence available.

  3. Eya Ayambem says

    Great Job Etisalat. They have set the pace many times.

  4. onepageafrica says

    Dear Eya, many thanks for stopping by. It's a great job from them to particularly the young generation. We pray it is sustained over time.

  5. onepageafrica says

    It is indeed!

  6. onepageafrica says

    We hope many more corporate citizens would do same.Thank you.

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