In its avowed bid to sustain The Wole Soyinka prize for Literature in Africa which started in 2006 as a way to encouraging people to read, think and write, Lumina Foundation, the organisers of the award last week, announced the programmme of events for the fourth edition of the award and also, called for entries for the prestigious prizes scheduled to hold on Friday, July 6, 2012.
Adressing the press, Chairman of Lumina Foundation, Chief Francesca Emmanuel disclosed that The Wole Soyinka Prize for Literature in Africa was established in 2006 as a Biennial Award to the best literary work produced by an African through assessement of works by African authors published within the two years preceding the award year.
Continuing, Emmanuel stated that “The WS Prize for Literature in Africa counts as its sponsors, some of the best brands in Africa, and its Pan-African structure showcases Africa’s great brands, as they collectively promote Africa’s identity, content and packaging.”
She further added that the Prize of the award is US$20,000 (Twenty Thousand United States Dollars), and that the winner is decided by a Panel of Judges made up of eminent scholars, entrepreneurs and individuals of great intellectual dispositions from across the African continent.
According to her, the first edition of the award assessed eighty-seven entries from eight African countries and was won by Seffi Attah with her novel, Everything Good Will Come.
The second edition assessed two hundred and four entries from ten African countries and was won by Nnedi Okorafor with her novel, Zahrah, the Windseeker.,
while the third edition which assessed three hundred and thirty-six entries from eleven African countries produced joint winners in the persons of Dr, Kopalno Maltwa from South Africa and Dr. Wale Okediran from Nigeria, with their novels Coconut and Tenants of the House respectively.
According to her, the encouraging growth of the award and the significant increase in literary works being submitted brings home the progress made in developing a truly African mechanism for promoting, enhancing and recognizing the greatness of our vast cultural and literary heritage.
The entry opens on 15th July and closes on October 1, 2011. The schedule of other events leading to the prize is as follows: June 1, 2012, announcement of the long list, June 25, 2012 announcement of the short list, while the award night will hold on July 6, 2012.
Contributing, the founder of Lumina oundation,Ogochukwu Promise said that despite the challenge of funding that Lumina has been able to sustain The Wole Syinka prize up till now. “For me to have sustained it to this level means that we will continue since it is our prize, African prize.” She said.