Increasingly, the story of Africa is being told by non-Africans, leading to an overall negative narrative that fosters a negative self-image amongst Africans about their continent.

Negative incidences exist; however they are not the defining feature of an African existence.

Africa’s Ultimate Storyteller Contest encourages Africans to take the lead in telling the African story in a balanced way that encourages a positive self-image.

The contest rewards those that share their world in a way that educates or inspires.


The contest will consist of three stages
At the end of each stage, a live event will be broadcast through our WEBSITE, YouTube live, Facebook live, and Instagram’s IGTV to announce the winners of that round.

STAGE ONE – All participants submit a 3-5 minute story before the closing date.

Public votes from the general public will determine the semi-finalists that will represent their country in stage two of the contest. ONE SEMI-FINALIST WILL BE SELECTED FROM EACH PARTICIPATING COUNTRY

At the end of stage one, storytelling training will be provided to semi-finalists at no cost. This is done to increase the quality of stories for further stages.

STAGE TWO – The semi-finalists submit a 5-7 minute true story before the closing date.

The judges, who are selected from various storytelling organisations across the continent, will judge this stage of the contest and select 10 finalists for the final stage of the contest. The Hadithi ya Africa Judging criteria will be used as a guide. The judges decision is final.

STAGE THREE – The 10 finalists submit a 7-10 minute true story before the closing date.

The general public will be encouraged to vote for their favourite story through the voting page on our website https://story.africa

Judges will also judge each story and provide a judges score

Both the judge’s score and the public vote will be considered to crown the winner.


African Citizenship

The contest is open to all Africans above the age of 18 years by 17 May 2021. All participants must possess citizenship in an African country to be eligible to compete.

Participant may only represent a country they possess citizenship in. Proof of citizenship may be requested if a dispute is raised.

True Stories Only

All stories delivered must be TRUE STORIES as lived by you. Hadithi ya Africa does NOT verify stories. However, disqualification is the penalty if evidence is submitted by the general public that falsifies any story shared.

You must have earned the right to tell that story. Please sensitize those that are mentioned by name so that you do not harm anyone in the process of telling your story.


The closing time for each deadline is 23:59.59 GMT+3. No submissions received after cut off time will be accepted.

Place of Submission

A submission form housed at https://story.africa will be provided to contestants. Contestants are required to complete all the information required for submission. Contestants are strongly advised to make submission a day before the deadline to avoid system congestion. If any error occurs, as back-up, we will accept submissions uploaded to https://wetransfer.com before the cut off time. Please also submit a screen shot as proof of errors experienced.

Submission formats

This a storytelling contest as such no additional points will be allocated on video editing skills. Video edits on the final submission will not be allowed. No digital enhancements of the video will be allowed.

You are free to trim your video at the start and at the end, however Finalists are permitted to have only one mid video edit.

Stage one – Videos must be between 3-5 minutes, a 30 seconds allowance will be allowed for videos exceeding the required video duration.

Stage two – Videos must be between 5-7 minutes, a 30 seconds allowance will be allowed for videos exceeding the required video duration.

Stage three – Videos must be between 7-10 minutes, a 30 seconds allowance will be allowed for videos exceeding the required video duration.


The panel of Judges are selected from multiple poetry, literature and storytelling organization across the African continent. This to ensure a diversity that fosters a fair contest regardless of the contestants storytelling techniques.

Judges will be announced to you as soon as they have completed their training. None of the members of the Hadithi ya Africa team nor the contest team will form part of the judging panel.

Public votes will be accepted via the https://story.africa website. All votes from valid unique email addresses with be accepted. The calculation formula will be communicated to you during StoryShop.

Contestants are free to audit the results post contest. Contestants may petition the contest manager with this request.

Voting Structure

Judges will judge stage two and stage three of the contest.

Stage two – Only judges scoring will be used to determine the finalists.

Stage three – Both the judges scoring and the audience vote will determine winners

– Public votes, count 60% towards the final score

– Judges will amount to 40% of the final score.

Judges Scoring Criteria

The judges will be scoring the contestants across four categories

  1. Story Structure
  2. Conflict 
  3. Creativity
  4. Broad Appeal

The details of how this works will be explained in the storytelling Training provided at the end of stage one.


Disputes may be lodged in writing with the Contest Manager (Thandwefika Tshabalala), before results are announced. Disputes may be lodges on grounds of Eligibility, and  contravention of contest rules.

Contestant may not reach out to any judge directly.

Only serious allegations will be entertained once the results are announced. No disputes will be accepted 7 days after the winner is announced at the end of the contest.

On receipt of a dispute, the Contest Manager will collect all relevant information and bring the dispute to the attention of the judges. Judges will be required to deliberate on the dispute and issue a written ruling.

The Judge’s ruling is final and binding to all participants, the contest team and the Hadithi ya Africa team.