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‘The Trial of Jack Mapanje’ to be staged

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By Sam Banda Jnr:

A play titled The Trial of Jack Mapanje, which Stephen Ndhlovu has written and Dudu Nsomba has published in the United Kingdom, is set to be staged.

The play is based on the arrest and detention of writer and poet Jack Mapanje.

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Mapanje was the head of the Department of English at Chancellor College, a constituent college of the University of Malawi, at the time of his arrest in 1987.

He was released in 1991.

The play will be staged by Mbona Arts.

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One of Mbona Arts’ members, Duncan Chirwa, said: “We are ready for the showcase”.

He said the play has two characters— Chola, a journalist trained in United States of America, and university lecturer and playwright Ndatero— that have been fighting for change in their respective professions and are detained at a maximum prison without charge.

“Ndatero is actively involved in the fight for change. He demands change and nothing else but, unlike Chola, he is not in a hurry because he realises that change cannot be achieved overnight,” Chirwa said.

He said Mbona Arts has been funded by Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa to produce and tour all the four major cities of the country.

In the play Alick Tembo plays Chola (Jack Mapanje) while Ndatero is being played by Chirwa.

The play has a cast of two.

The tour of the play starts at Madsoc Theatre in Lilongwe on March 16 2019.

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