Anuarite Nyiha of Kianda School won the Nairobi County’s Spell Like A Champion 2019 competition.
Victor Nzoka of Strathmore School and Lawrence Kuria of Rophine Field Junior School emerged second and third respectively.
The competition, which was held on Saturday at Nairobi Primary School saw about 235 schools participate with some schools presenting 50 to 100 pupils.
The three emerged winners after beating 27 other pupils in Nairobi’s 10 sub-counties.
Nyiha and Nzoka, both 13 represented Westlands Sub-county. Kuria, also 13, represented Njiru Sub-county.
According to judges Jeremy Makau, Joyce Njogu and Mercy Odoyo, the three correctly spelt more words than the rest.
Similar competitions were held in 40 other counties and will culminate in a national level competition to be held in Nairobi from August 2 to 5.
The three pupils will now battle it out with 117 others from 40 counties and the first, second and third nationally will walk away with Sh500,000, Sh300,000 and Sh200,000 respectively.
Their teachers will also pocket Sh50,000, Sh30,000 and Sh20,000 respectively and a 26-seater minibus will be awarded to the school that will produce the best pupil.
Winners at the nationals will represent Kenya in the annual African Spelling Bee competitions that will be held in Uganda.
“The competition was tough, some of the words were very challenging making me think a lot, they were not hard but were not common, we don’t use them a lot and I had to think a lot. I’m looking forward to becoming a better speller in the nationals and win that Sh500,000,” said Nyiha.
Nzoka also shared Nyiha’s sentiments. “The competition was scary because some of the words were very uncommon and hard to spell and the audience also scared me. I hope to win at the nationals and represent Kenya at the Africa level,” said Nzoka.
On his part Kuria said: “I gained confidence from my colleagues that were also in the competition even if they didn’t make it.”
Judge Makau told The Standard that the competition is in its third edition and this year there was a great improvement. “Only one participant who participated last year was present meaning that spelling has grown,” said Makau.
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