Award-winning Nigerian author, Chimamanda Adichie, has paid glowing tributes to the late renowned Kenyan author, Binyavanga Wainaina, describing his demise as a loss of a “precious friend.’’
Adichie, who shared photos taken with the late author on her Instagram handle, @chimamanda_adichie, professed her undying love for him:
“Binyavanga Wainaina. (1971 – 2019)
“So kind, generous, humorous, brilliant, brave, talented, knowledgeable, wonderfully curious, and so original. I am struggling. To use the past tense. To stop crying.
“My beloved ‘Canga.’ There is nobody else remotely like you. Nobody. With you, I felt so known, so understood. And there is no gift in a friendship more precious than this.
“I love you. Always. Rest well. Chimamanda.”
Wainaina died on May 21 at age 48 after an illness. He was a key figure in the artistic community and known for promoting local authors.
Wainaina, who won the 2002 Caine Prize for African Writing, wrote several works, including an essay, How to Write About Africa; and a memoir, ¸ Day I Will Write About This Place.
The late writer also wrote a short story, Discovering Home; and An Affair to Dismember.
He was described by TIME magazine during its annual TIME 100 as one of the “Most Influential People in the World.”
Wainaina, who revealed he was HIV-positive, also helped to create tolerance for the Lesbians, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community by coming out publicly in 2014 as a gay in Kenya, a country where laws still criminalise homosexual behaviour.