The judges of the Babishai Haiku 2017 competition have announced the shortlist for this year’s competition.
The Babishai Niwe Foundation started their Haiku competition in 2016 with Blessmond Alebna Ayinbire (Ghana), Chibuihe-Light Obi (Nigeria), and Kwaku Feni Adow (Ghana) sharing the grand prize.
The second edition of the competition dubbed the Babishai Haiku 2017 competition kicked off this year with a call out for submissions. African poets who had not published a full-length collection of poetry by July 2017 were asked to submit Africa themed haiku i.e. haiku about African sights and sounds. Their submissions would be looked at by judges, Adjei Agyei-Baah, co-founder of the Africa Haiku Network, Mercy Ikuri, a landscape designer and award-winning haikuist from Kenya and Emmanuel Kalusian, editor of the Mamba Journal.
The Babishai Haiku have announced those in the running for this year’s goodies. With a significant increase in the interest of the African haiku the team had to sift through double the number of submissions made last year. Even with the extra work, the team submits that the shortlist is filled with unwavering talent, intricate African imagery and recognizable brilliance. They come from all over the continent and the full list of those in the running are;
- Charlotte Akello (Uganda)
- Usman Karofi (Nigeria)
- Kariuki wa Nyamu (Kenya)
- Anthony Itopa Obaro (Nigeria)
- Ahamad Holderness (Nigeria)
- Fred Kweku Forson (Ghana)
- Acen Miriam Carolyne (Uganda)
- Kwao Jonathan Tetteh (Ghana)
- Nnedi Ezenwa Ohaeto (Nigeria)
- Alawonde Theophilus Femi (Nigeria)
- Justice Joseph Prah (Ghana)
- Osemwengie Zion (Nigeria)
- Abubasam Fahad Mutumba (Uganda)
- Akor Emmanuel Oche (Nigeria)
- Kuadegbeku Pamela (Ghana)
- Obaji Nwali Shegun (Nigeria)
- Dan’bala Umar (Ghana)
You may read all the haikus in the running for the prize here;
The winners will be announced on Sunday 6 August at the Babishai 2017 poetry festival dinner. They top three Haiku will be published in the Mamba Haiku Journal. The winners also get cash prizes and the opportunity to attend other African literary festivals.