AWDT announces Speakers, Judges for the 2019 African Writers Conference and Awards

The African Writers Development Trust has announced Speakers for the 2019 African Writers Conference. The African Writers Conference this year will focus on Cultural Stereotypes in African Literature: Rewriting the Narratives for the 21st Century Reader. This conference will hold on 28th September at the Sarit Centre, Westlands, Nairobi, Kenya.

A statement from Namse Udosen, Public Relations Manager of AWDT lists the 5 speakers from 4 African countries as Sabah Carrim (Mauritius), Nnane Ntube (Cameroun), Nabilah Usman (Nigeria), Alex Nderitu (Kenya), and Tom Odhiambo (Kenya).

Sabah Carrim (Mauritius) – Keynote Speaker
 Sabah is a Mauritian novelist with two novels: Humeirah (2012) and Semi-Apes (2015). Both stories are set in Mauritius where she was born. Sabah's short stories have been selected for publication in writing competitions organised by the Commonwealth Foundation and Goethe Institute South Africa.
Sabah is also a law lecturer and a freelance editor at Bloomsbury. She currently lives in Kuala Lumpur. ​​Her next proposed publication is an anthology of short stories on education titled The Teacher and The Taught.
Sabah Carrim
Sabah will be delivering the keynote address on Cultural Stereotypes in African Literature: Rewriting the narratives for the 21st Century Reader.

Nnane Ntube (Cameroon)
Nnane is a Cameroonian-born poet, a teacher, an activist for change, a youth envoy for peace and democracy and a social entrepreneur. She holds a B.A. in English Language and a B.A. in Bilingual Studies obtained from the University of Yaounde. 
Nnane Ntube
As a performance poet, she uses her poetry group, Breaking Point, founded in 2017, to dramatize her poems. This group largely focuses on poems written against the backdrop of cultural activities in Africa. Its members come from different national and international cultural backgrounds. She is presently in collaboration with the UNESCO #DefyHateNow team to bring back the culture of peace in Africa and the world at large. Her works have appeared in journals and magazines globally.

Nabilah Usman (Nigeria)
Nabilah is a teacher with a background in broadcasting. Working in (and with) various forms of media has defined the past 5 years of her life. She writes poetry and critical essays and makes social commentaries .She has had the privilege of working in traditional media (broadcast radio) and new media trends, and both have given -in her words- “the opportunity to contribute to the development of media in Nigeria”. She has worked with a couple of start-up radio stations, helping to create and establish guidelines and policies that would govern the affairs of each organisation.
Nabilah Usman
In the past two years, she has been more active in Nigeria’s education sector, working as an English teacher in Kaduna state, Nigeria. She spends part of her time volunteering at the ‘I too can read’ literacy program where she teaches the English language to children from less privileged homes. She is a volunteer editor with Tanar Kaduna Bookathon team and currently serves as the director of the PurpleSilver Budding Club (a platform that encourages the literary spirit in young people in secondary schools).

Alex Nderitu (Kenya)
Alex Nderitu is a Kenyan poet, playwright and novelist. His first book, 'When the Whirlwind Passes' has the distinction of being Africa’s first digital novel. Some of his writings have been translated into Swedish, Japanese, Chinese, Arabic and Swahili. In 2014, his poem ‘Someone in Africa Loves You’ represented Kenyan literature on Poetry Postcards distributed during the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland. 
Alex Nderitu
His fiction is available worldwide via the Worldreader app and devices. In 2017, he was named by Business Daily newspaper as one of Kenya's 'Top 40 Under 40 Men'. Nderitu is also the Deputy Secretary-General of Kenyan PEN and is the Kenyan Editor of the international theatre news portal, He is also an active social media cultural activist and has a large following on his "How to be a Kenyan Intellectual".

Tom Odhiambo (Kenya)
Tom Odhiambo is a literary critic and a senior lecturer in the Department of Literature at the University of Nairobi. 
Tom Odhiambo
He is also a culture and media scholar. He is a regular contributor to Kenyan newspapers and magazines on books, art and culture. He will be moderating the discussion sessions at the AWC this year.

The Judges for the 2019 African Writers Awards for Flash Fiction, Short Stories, Poetry and Children's Literature are Kolabomi Adeko - Nigeria – Poetry, Nahida Esmail - Tanzania - Children's Literature, Sabah Carrim - Mauritius - Short Stories, Adah Bitiah Chembo - Zambia - Flash Fiction, and Anthony Onugba - Nigeria - Chief Judge.

Kolabomi Adeko - Nigeria - Poetry
Kolabomi is a physicist by training but a poet by passion. He has an amazing mastery of wordplay and puns. He is currently the editor of Poetica magazine, an online poetry magazine. He lives in the ancient city of Ile-Ife, home to the prestigious Obafemi Awolowo University.

Nahida Esmail - Tanzania - Children's Literature
Tanzanian writer Nahida Esmail, born and raised in Dar es Salam, is an award-winning author. Her four young adult novels, Living in the Shade, Lessilie the City Maasai, Detectives of Shangani, and Living in the Shade: Aiming for the Summit have all received CODE’s Burt Award for African Literature. All four novels were finalists for the 2017 Burt Award for African Young Adult Literature: All-Stars competition. In 2015, she was honored with the Tanzania Women’s Achievement Award in the education category. She has 22 published books so far. Her historical fiction, which was a finalist at the 7th BURT Award, ‘Karafu: A freed Slave’ will soon to be published.

Sabah Carrim - Mauritius - Short Stories
Sabah, novelist, law lecturer and a freelance editor at Bloomsbury combines her role as lead speaker and judge at this year’s conference. She currently lives in Kuala Lumpur.
Adah Bitiah Chembo - Zambia - Flash Fiction
Adah Bitiah Chembo is a Zambian writer and editor. She has been writing professionally for over 5 years now. During this time, Adah has offered freelance report writing services on several occasions. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Demography and minoring Development Studies at The University of Zambia.  Additionally, Adah is a flash fiction editor at Writers Space Africa.

Anthony Onugba - Nigeria - Chief Judge
Anthony Onugba is a Nigerian born author of six books. These include Amanda’s Crime, The Chronicle of Christ, Reflections, and Mixed Emotions. He has lots of manuscripts that he has decided never to publish – for reasons even he does not know – and he is also a scriptwriter who studied film production and directing for film at both the National Film Institute, Jos and Lights Film School, New York.
Anthony is the creator of Writers Space Africa. He is also the founder and Vice President of the African Writers Development Trust. He is the brain behind the annual African Writers Conference and African Writers Awards.

Currently, Anthony serves as the Executive Director of the African Writers Development Trust. He resides in Nigeria and loves to talk with animals, walk under the rain, and gaze at the stars.