Zimbabwean novelist and filmmaker Tsitsi Dangarembga has been awarded the Africa Freedom Prize by the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom.
In a statement, the Foundation said the award is in recognition of Dangarembga’s unwavering resilience and commitment to the cause of political reform and freedom in Zimbabwe.
Dangarembga will receive the award on October 5 at Market Theatre, Johannesburg, South Africa. The Foundation said:
"The Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom is proud to announce that it will be awarding the Africa Freedom Prize to renowned Zimbabwean author, novelist, playwright, and screenwriter, Tsitsi Dangarembga, in recognition of her unwavering resilience and commitment to the cause of political reform and freedom in Zimbabwe.
Tsitsi Dangarembga, a prominent literary figure, gained international acclaim for her literary works and activism. Her recent arrest for staging a peaceful protest demanding political reform in Zimbabwe served as a stark reminder of the challenges faced by those advocating for change in the country.
Despite the adversity she faced, Tsitsi Dangarembga continued to be a symbol of courage and determination.
The Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom has closely followed the trial of Tsitsi Dangarembga, along with that of Barnes, and was committed to monitoring the proceedings from the very beginning.
Fungisai Sithole, an employee of the Foundation, was present at the court to observe and report on the trial’s developments.
The significance of an internationally renowned author being tried in her own homeland cannot be overstated.
This case has garnered significant attention worldwide, shedding light on the challenges faced by activists, writers, and advocates for political reform in Zimbabwe, where such trials are sadly a daily occurrence."
Previous recipients of the Africa Freedom Prize include Mmusi Maimane, former leader of the opposition in South Africa, Gareth Cliff, radio personality, Bobi Wine, Ugandan opposition leader, Hakainde Hichilema, Zambian President (received the award when he was an opposition leader), Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Nigerian novelist, and Cellou Dalein Diallo, former Vice President of Guinea (most recent recipient).