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Two Nigerian Writers Shortlisted For 2019 Caine Prize

caine prize

Lesley Arimah and Tochukwu Okafor, Nigerian writers, have been shortlisted for the 2019 Caine Prize for African Writing.

The five-writer shortlist for the 20th edition of the Caine Prize was announced, on Monday, by Peter Kimani, this year’s chair of judges and Kenyan author of the award-winning novel ‘Dance of the Jakaranda.’

They include authors from Cameroon, Ethiopia, Kenya and Nigeria.

According to the organiser, there will be a cash prize of £10,000 for the winning author and a travel award for each of the short-listed candidates.

The shortlisted candidates will also receive a prize of £500 and the winner will be invited to attend three literature festivals in Kenya, South Africa and Nigeria.


The shortlisted stories will be printed by new internationalist in a special publication to mark the twentieth Caine Prize award dinner.

It will be achieved through co-publishers in 16 African countries that have received a print-ready PDF free of charge.

Here is a list of the shortlisted writers for the 2019 Caine Prize:

  • Lesley Nneka Arimah (Nigeria) for ‘Skinned’, published in McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, Issue 53 (2018).
  • Meron Hadero (Ethiopia) for ‘The Wall’, published in McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, Issue 52 (2018).
  • Cherrie Kandie (Kenya) for ‘Sew My Mouth’, published in ID Identity: New Short Fiction From Africa (2018).
  • Ngwah-Mbo Nana Nkweti (Cameroon) for ‘It Takes A Village Some Say’, published in The Baffler (2017).
  • Tochukwu Emmanuel Okafor (Nigeria) for ‘All Our Lives’, published in ID Identity: New Short Fiction From Africa (2018).

In 2018, Makena Onjerika, Kenyan writer, won the Caine Prize for African Writing for her short story entitled ‘Fanta Blackcurrant,’ published in Wasafiri (2017).

The Caine Prize is an annual literary award for the best original short story by an African writer, whether in Africa or elsewhere, published in the English language.

The £10,000 prize was founded in the UK in 2000, and was named in memory of Michael Harris Caine, a former chairman of Booker Group plc.


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