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ESTHER AND PEGGY WIN! (article first published : 1999-11-21)

With Ifeoma Okoye of Nigeria, Durbanís Esther Zondo and Peggy Verbaan are joint winners of the Africa section of the 1999 Commonwealth Short Story Competition with their short story The Waiting . The overall winner of the competition was Cherie SA Jones of Barbados.

Born in 1938 in Ndwende, Esther Zondo has no formal education. In 1963, she came to Durban to work as a domestic help and has raised her two sons, Samson and David, alone from when they were babies. She now has eight grandchildren. Ester recited her story to Peggy Verbaan since she cannot read nor write. This is the first short story competition she has entered.

Peggy Verbaan is a former St Maryís College student. When her children left home, she travelled throughout Europe with her husband Corrie and spent a year living in a Greek village. She started writing in 1994 after taking a short story course and since then her stories and articles have been published in national magazines. She was highly commended in last yearís Commonwealth Short Story Competition for her story Falling Fences.




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