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Steve Chimombo to be remembered Saturday

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The death of one of the country’s famous writers and author of The Rainmaker Professor Steve Bernard Miles Chimombo in December last year left the nation in great pain.

Chimombo was a star and no ordinary writer. He spearheaded several projects in the creative industry including the University of Malawi –Chancellor College (Chanco) Writers Workshop.

Through the Chanco Writers Workshop several writers have been trained.

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The literary colossus may be gone but his legacy still lives on.

It is in this vein that Chanco Writers Workshop has organised Chimombo’s remembrance event at Great Hall in Zomba Saturday.

According to Chanco Writers Workshop President Anganile Chagwamnjira the event will be spiced up by several performances.

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“The event is all about remembering Professor Steve Chimombo, who contributed a lot to Malawian literature and was also the founding member of the Chanco Writers Workshop,” said Chagwamnjira.

She said they have among others invited writers clubs from Catholic University and The Polytechnic.

There will also be performances from Yangairo Yangairo, Yankho Seunda, Emmanuel Manto, a play by Chanco Travelling Theatre, Seth Tembo, Waliko Makhala, Paul Sezzie, Benedicto Wokomaatani Malunga, Alfred Msadala, Junior Nyanda, Norman Nyirenda, Zondiwe Mbano and Mufunanji Magalasi.

Chagwamnjira also said that Chimombo’s son Zangaphe will perform.

Zangaphe and Steve Kango earlier last year translated The Rainmaker play which his late father wrote in 1975.

The Chichewa version of The Rainmaker titled Mmatsakamula was staged at the Great Hall in Zomba by Chancellor College Travelling Theatre.

Born on September 4, 1945, Professor Chimombo was educated at Zomba Catholic Secondary School, then at the University of Malawi where he earned his degree.

He then went to University of Wales, in UK where he obtained a teaching diploma in English as a second language. He then went on to obtain his masters and PhD in teaching at Columbia University in United States of America.

Professor Chimombo also studied at Leeds in England before he returned home and went on to edit a literary bulletin known as Outlook-lookout.

He was a professor of English at Chancellor College and was considered one of the nation’s leading writers. In 1988 his Napolo Poems gained him honourable mention for the Noma Award for Publishing in Africa and in 2014 he received a Legendary Award from Malawi Writers Union (Mawu) alongside other veteran writers DD Phiri, Dr James Ng’ombe and Willie Zingani.

Survived by a wife, three children and four grand children, Professor Chimombo’s other works include The Hyena Wears Darkness, The Bird Boy’s Song, The Culture of Democracy: Language, Literature, the Arts and Politics in Malawi, Napolo and thePython, Python! Python!, The Basket Girl and Wachiona Ndani?.

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