The book contains African folktales, quizzes and proverbs as traditionally told (by the Ndau people), typically by a grandmother, to children in the evenings. These folktales are passed through this oral tradition from generation to generation and form a critical cultural upbringing that shapes the morals, value systems and way of life of the African societies. The stories told to children from an early age each has a moral teaching or is built around some ancient African ‘words of wisdom’. Whilst Chisiya was studying in England (1979 to 1985), and also starting a family he wrote the folktales initially for his children, but the stories got popular with friends, culminating in the Sheffield Education department (through Chris Searle – their multi-cultural adviser) asking Chisiya to tell some of his grandmothers’ folktales to schools in 1985. Chisiya was hosted by Ellesmere and Pye Bank First schools in Sheffield, where the children would make illustrations about the stories. Now these original children’s drawings have been used in this book. Afrikan Lullaby was first published in 1986 by Karia Press; and this is now its second publication.
Jefrey Chisiya cho-Mukonto III (Kutchwa-Dube) was born on 18th September 1960 in Muzite village, Chipinge District, Zimbabwe. He is the son of Mabaya II (Lighton) Kutchwa-Dube, who is the son of Kutchwa I, the son of Chisiya cho-Mukonto I, who was a great warrior in the army of King Ngungunyana of Gazaland. Chisiya cho-Mukonto I, was the orphaned son of Muchigere, who was the son of Mabaya I, who was the son of King Chipika, son of King Mapambapashi the founder of Mapunganiland (kwaMapungwana) of the zebra totem. Naturally he went through the strict cultural seasoning of the Ndau High Culture. He attended Muzite Primary School 1968-1974, and secondary education at Mt. Silinda (Chirinda) Institute (1975-1978). He arrived in England in 1979 for further studies and went on to obtain his Bsc (Hons) in Electronic Systems and Control Engineering at Sheffield-Hallam University (1981-1985). He was Public Relations and Publicity Officer of the African-Caribbean Society at the university. Chisiya returned to Zimbabwe in 1986 and worked as a Plant Engineer till 1994 when he moved to South Africa where he worked as a Logistics Manager (after obtaining a distance learning MBA from Herriot-Watt University – Scotland). His last corporate role was as Supply Chain director for Southern Africa of a French-based multi-national company. He retired from the corporate world in 2009, to take up consulting, writing and farming.