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Mureri's collection of Tshivenda poems wins prestigious award

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Phalaphala FM’s current-affairs presenter/producer and popular “TikTok”-er Mutsitselwa Mureri is also making her mark in the world of literature. The 40-year-old author from Dzanani, in Nzhelele, scooped up the Book Behind Awards’ Best Indigenous Languages Book award in the Tshivenda category. The awards ceremony was held in Pietermaritzburg on Saturday, 11 November. The winners of the respective categories were selected by vote.

In 2017, Mureri published an English poetry book, “Handbook of My Life”, followed by her collection of Tshivenda poems, titled “Mbuno Dza Lufuno” in 2022, which cemented her stature as a writer. Mureri said that winning this award meant a great deal to her and had given her a lot more confidence to continue writing in her native language.

“I am extremely thrilled, and I feel encouraged to write more books in Tshivenda now. I am a newcomer in the field, but the community rallied behind me. Without their votes, I would not have won this award. I want to extend my warm gratitude to everyone who had faith in me and supported me. I was pitted against very established authors, but I emerged victorious,” she said.

Mureri’s literary journey started many years ago when she was still in primary school. “I first realised that I have a talent for writing in 1994, when I was a learner at Vhutuwangadzebu Primary School. My late teacher, Mr Nndwammbi Muofhe, gave our Standard 4 class a homework assignment to write a short story. From there on, I capitalised on it, writing short stories throughout my high school years.

“I discovered my love for writing poetry only when I went on to further my studies after school. I have collaborated with other authors twice before, but I was never rewarded for those collaborations. In 2022, I had “Mbuno Dza Lufuno” published by Dzuvha Publishers. This one is my special baby because it is in Tshivenda. I have come to realise that Tshivenda literature is not being recognised enough, hence I took a firm stand to write in my indigenous language,” she said.

 

 
 

Award-winning author Ms Mutsitselwa Mureri shows off her award. Photo supplied.

 

By: Elmon Tshikhudo

Elmon Tshikhudo started off as a photographer. He developed an interest in writing and started submitting articles to local as well as national publications. He became part of the Limpopo Mirror family in 2005 and was a permanent part of the news team until 2019.

 

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