Nigerian author Rotimi Babatunde wins £10,000 Caine Prize for African Writing | Books & Poetry

Nigerian author Rotimi Babatunde has been awarded the 13th Caine Prize for African writing, winning £10,000 for his short story “Bombay’s Republic” from Mirabilia Review Vol. 3.9 (Lagos, 2011).

Babatunde beat out four other shortlisted writers, including Billy Kahora of Kenya, Malawi’s Stanley Kenani, Zimbabwean author Melissa Tandiwe Myambo and South Africa’s Constance Myburgh.

Babatunde, who also has a win in the Meridian Tragic Love Story Competition (organised by the BBC World Service) under his belt, has been published in Africa, Europe and America. His plays have been staged and presented by Chicago’s Halcyon Theatre and the Institute for Contemporary Arts.

Based in Ibadan, Nigeria, Babatunde is currently taking part in a collaboration produced at the Royal Court and the Young Vic as part of World Stages for a World City.

Praising Babatunde’s prize-winning short story, Bernardine Evaristo MBE — the Lara author and 2012 Chair of the Cain Prize — said:

“’Bombay’s Republic’ vividly describes the story of a Nigerian soldier fighting in the Burma campaign of World War Two. It is ambitious, darkly humorous and in soaring, scorching prose exposes the exploitative nature of the colonial project and the psychology of Independence.”

Babatunde’s prize-winning story tells the tale of Colour Sergeant Bombay, a Nigerian soldier fighting in Burma during World War 2.

For more info on Rotimi Babatunde and the prestigious literary award, check out the Cain Prize website.