AKO Caine Prize For African Writing Awards Dinner Postponed Amidst Coronavirus Fears

by Yinka Akanbi

In a bid to nip the spread of the COVID-19 outbreak, the AKO Caine has announced the postponement of the 2020 prize ceremony slated for June 23 in London.

The ceremony, during which winners of the prize will be announced, is one of the highlights of the African literary community calendar as it attracts hundreds of attendees from different parts of the world.

“After the latest government measures to slow down the spread of Coronavirus, we have taken the difficult decision to postpone the AKO Caine Prize dinner due to take place on Tuesday 23 June to a later more appropriate date, which will be announced as soon as possible,” organisers said in a press release.

However, Chair of the AKO Caine Prize for African Writing, Ellah P Wakatama OBE, stated that the postponement will not affect the award cycle and shortlists should still be expected in May.

“We are working to ensure the Prize cycle is maintained and we will announce the 2020 shortlist in early May. In the face of this global crisis, people’s health is paramount, and our activities and events will be held online for the foreseeable future. I look forward to meeting supporters on our digital platforms soon.”

According to the statement, while a new date is being considered, organisers are looking at ways to make the AKO Caine Prize literature available online and to provide clear updates on approach in the coming months.

“Our social media will remain a place to meet,” it added.

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