The Sunday News
Rumbidzai Mhlanga, Sunday Life Reporter
An old adage says poverty is the parent of revolution and crime, but young Lizom Fanwell Ncube has proven that wrong as poverty inspired him to strive to be a better person in life and do all he can to upgrade the community he grew up in.
The 21-year-old author and poet, born and raised in a backward community in Nkayi, Matabeleland North where he felt they did not get much opportunities that other students from other areas got. As a result, he grew up determined to change the status quo in his community.
“From the age of 15 at Mateme Secondary School I wished to be an author and poet but where we learnt and lived there were no platforms to help us practice all that. There was no one to help me put to ground what I had in mind, no one was there to help me explore my talent.
“Due to that fact I kept my gift suppressed for five years. It was in 2018 when I started pursuing my dream of becoming an author and poet. In December 2018, I worked on my first piece in collaboration with other poets titled Ingxubevange-Zilisweene-Simujinga which is an anthology of poems and short stories in Ndebele, Tonga and Nambya respectively,” said Mr Ncube.
The author said even though he writes because he is passionate about it, the other reason he writes is to represent where he comes from.
“I write because I have the zeal for writing and I know it is my talent but the major reason is to put the name of a Nkayi person on the map in the arts industry so that people may know some good can come out of Nkayi,” he said.
Since he started the poet and author said he has a number of poems and five novels.
“I have over 106 poems which I have written and recorded and some of them I post on social platforms namely Nguban’ongcono (Best of the best), Bantwabam’umuntu ngiyamazi, Black Umfolosi and Engakubonayo just to mention a few.
“I also have five novels which are yet to be published Ingxubevange, Ukwenza Komhlaba, Ndiza Ngqungqulu, an anthology of poems, Amazilo and Ayephila njani amaNdebele,” he said.
As a way of giving back to his community, Ncube came up with an initiative to empower students at his former school.
“As someone who also encountered the challenges the Mateme Secondary School students face, I came up with an initiative called the Talent Search and Development Show meant to empower rural schools and I started with my school. I realised that rural schools students are disadvantaged in a way that they are not given a platform to practice and nurture their talents hence this initiative will help students discover their talents,” Ncube said.
The author said he aspires to give youths in his community opportunities he did not get.
“I wish to bring Talent Search and Development Shows to most of the schools in my area and in the long run in all rural schools. I would like to be the mentor I never had to some people and help them polish their talents.
“When I get enough sponsors, since I am still a student at Lupane State University and cannot fund for most of the things that will help students at rural schools, I wish to establish a registered publishing house in Nkayi so that it will get easier for those who are also passionate about writing to publish their books,” he said.