Liberia: Young Poetic Writer Wins Int'l Award

Monrovia — A young Liberian writer, Edwin Olu Bestman of Stella Maris Polytechnic, last week won an online award from the World Nation Writer's Union (WNWU) based in India. WNWU also has branches in other parts of the world including Africa.

Bestman was among over 500 contestants, who came from around the world and entered the competition. At the end, he was among the 150 participants, who emerged winners representing their various countries.

"We were 150 contestants, who won in three categories: Diploma one, which represents DISTINCTION, and Diploma two, EXCELLENCE while Diploma three for GOOD. I won Diploma one," said Bestman, beaming with smile.

23-year-old Bestman is a student at Stella Maris Polytechnic reading Civil Engineering. However, he has won several awards in Literacy, totally another field of studies. Notwithstanding, Bestman told this newspaper that he finds solace in writing whenever he is down.

Both his parents are deceased. His mother passed when he was still an infant and two years ago, his dad, who was breadwinner, sadly joined his mother. He now has to fend for himself.

His award winning poem is on using peace to save his fellow writers. He stated that many writers were committing suicide worldwide.

"Therefore the poem I composed was entitled, 'Peace Embraces Love' because Liberians have embraced peace in celebrating more than 15 years of peace," he said.

Bestman said he did not know his writings were read by many young people in Liberia, until he won 2018 Young Adult Award from Accountability Lab. According a group of young people his age had walked up to him asked if he was the same Edwin Bestman, who is the writer.

"Writing is about saving lives, therefore, my poems usually speak to humanity. I am writing a book. It is titled, 'The Bright Horizon'. It is going to contain over a hundred poems. I chose that name for my book to tell Liberians that we should always say positive things about our country. We have to write our own stories and not wait for outsiders to write for us because they will always add and omit. We just need to keep doing what we do to give Liberia a positive image. We had many good Liberian writers in the past but Liberian literacy works do not get out as the Ghanaian and Nigerian writers," he said.

Bestman, studying to obtain, an Bachelor's degree in Civil Engineering, he already holds an Associate Degree in his field of study from the same Stella Maris Polytechnic.

He affiliates with several national and international writing platforms, including International African Writers Association (IAWA), Poetry City (PC), We Write Liberia (WWL), Liberian Poet Society (LPS), Motivational Strips (MS), World Literature Academy (WLA), Poetry Abilities (PA), Home of African Poetry and Splendid Stories (HAPSS), Global Literary Society (GLS).

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