Lamu boy who borrowed shoes from teacher steals the show at drama festival

Abubakar Mahamoud,

Abubakar Mahamoud.

Photo credit: Anthony Njagi | Nation Media Group

Unlike other performers who appeared at the national stage with colourful costumes and well-painted backdrops, Abubakar Mahamoud, 17, had only his voice projection.

In fact, he had to borrow leather shoes from his director and teacher, Joseph Menza, and a t-shirt for his performance.

Abubakar, who had travelled hundreds of kilometres from Siyu island in Lamu to Embu to present his spoken word piece, won the hearts of adjudicators and the audience. He beat 21 competitors to emerge the overall winner. And that is why today, he will be among those presenting their pieces to President William Ruto at Sagana State Lodge.

According to Mr Menza, this is the first time that a school from Lamu is winning in the spoken word category at the national level.

Other pieces to be presented to the President include Kangaru School’s modern dance, which is about students who have no access to clean and safe water. They therefore consume contaminated water which causes them serious health complications. They then take it upon themselves to purify the water.

Friends School Kamusinga’s oral narrative Mambo is another thrilling presentation that the President will enjoy. The narrative is a critique of radio talk shows on relationships.

Mambo, who loves one such programme, sneaks a radio into his dormitory to follow the show. Using a mobile phone he also sneaked into school, he calls the station and asks to be connected to Ms Zipporah, their geography teacher. They agree to meet at the school’s rugby pitch at night.

As Mambo wanders in the pitch waiting, he is caught by Principal Nyati, who is accompanied by Ms Zipporah.

In the end, the school’s leadership starts a radio station at school for students to present their creative and academic works.

Charity Faith of Tigoi Girls High School will present a solo verse that encourages the public to embrace arts and sports as they may lead to economic prosperity. The verse’s persona is weighed down by academic activities, but when she gets an opportunity to get out of class and explore her talents, she becomes successful.

Other schools that will present their pieces to the President include PCEA Kagema Primary School with a solo verse, Kangaru Girls High School with their cultural creative dance Jamba ya Bururi and Lwak Girls with their oral narrative.