Nigerian Adeeko Ibukun last Friday won the Babishai Niwe Poetry Award 2015 for his poem A Room With A Drowning Book.
And first runner-up was Sheila Okongo Nyanduaki (The Ghost Of Jevanjee) from Kenya and second runner-up was Nick Makoha (LHR) from Uganda. Last year, Tom Jalio of Kenya won the prestigious award.
The competition, which attracted over 2,000 poets internationally, is an annual poetry event and this time round, the winner got $1000 and a copy of the Kampala Anthology and books by Professor Rem Raj from Nigeria.
The three-day event was hosted at the Uganda museum and the Uganda German Cultural Society, where the launching of the Kampala Anthology took place, attracted poets from Uganda, Kenya, and Nigeria, among others.
Performances by Batalo East Dance, Checkmate Mido and Fatuma’s Voice, master classes on poetry with Chijioke Amu-Nnadi, branding of Babishai T-shirts and book signing, among other activities braced the occasion.
Professor Rem Raj, the president of the Association of Nigerian Authors, announced the winner amidst tension from contestants and audience.
The top five won autographed poetry collections and anthologies like A Thousand Voices Rising, Boda Boda Anthem, poetry from Remi Raji and Harriet Anena.
The other 15 selected will all be a part of the new Babishai mentorship programme beginning later this year and will attend festivals around the continent. The judges for the BN Awards were: Richard Ali, Mildred Barya and Professor Antjie Krog.