Brunel’s African Poetry winners 2015
Sudanese poet Safia Elhillo and Ugandan-born writer Nick Makoha will be awarded £3,000. This year the judges decided to award the prize to two outstanding poets who exemplify the quality and diversity of emerging African poetry. The winners are SAFIA ELHILLO (Sudan) and NICK MAKOHA (Uganda). The annual competition is open to people born in Africa, African nationals or whose parents are African. The award is aimed at the development, celebration and promotion of poetry from Africa.
The judges described Elhillo as a “refreshing and extraordinary new voice whose poetry is haunting, original and deeply affecting”.
Makoha’s poetry was described as both “lyrical and brutal, and drawing powerfully and memorably on themes of migration and dictatorship”.
The judges this year were poets, critics and academics: Gabeba Baderoon, Malika Booker, Kwame Dawes, Warsan Shire, and Chair & Founder, Bernardine Evaristo. Out of 733 entries, the judges came up with a shortlist of six poets, none of whom had yet published a full length poetry book. The shortlisted poets were: Safia Elhillo (Sudan); Inua Ellams (Nigeria); Nick Makoha (Uganda); Bernard Matambo (Zimbabwe); Ngwatilo Mawiyoo (Kenya); Hope Wabuke (Uganda).
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