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Learn More about Godfrey “Gado” Mwampembwa

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Cartoonist Godfrey Mwampembwa, one of the Africa’s renowned editorial cartoonists, is popularly known by his penname GADO. He was born in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on August 6, 1969. He moved to Kenya in 1992, few years after his A-level, a time during which Kenya was going through rigorous revolutions in the political scene. He started working with Nation Media Group in Nairobi, Kenya, the largest newspaper group in East and Central Africa, as an editorial cartoonist and illustrator. Before joining the Nation, GADO freelanced with other newspapers, including Tanzania’s the Daily News, Business Times and the Express. Apart from publishing his works in the Daily Nation, he is also a regular contributor to other international newspapers including the New African (UK), Courier International (France), Business Day and Sunday Tribune (SA).

Gado is also interested in film and animation. From 1996-1997 he studied at Fabrica, a Communication Research Center in Treviso, Italy. In 2000, Gado joined the Vancouver Film School in Canada, where he studied classical animation and filmmaking, graduating in 2001.In 2003, Gado had the idea for The XYZ Show-a satirical news broadcast done by puppets. It was not until 2009 that Gado and his supporters secured funding and finally aired the first episode. The XYZ Show has been running ever since.

In addition to illustrating and contributing to many books and publications, GADO has published three cartoon collections: ABUNUWASI (1996); a short comic story book, “DEMOCRAZY”; and “THE END OF AN ERROR…” Gado has also received several awards for his works. He was named the Kenya Cartoonist of the Year in 1999. He is a two-times winner of the Kenya Human Rights Commission Award in 2005 and 2007. He is also a 2007 Prince Claus Laureate. He has traveled to different countries including Norway, Finland and Italy, apart from the Kenya and Tanzania, to exhibit his works. GADO is a member of Kenya Union of Journalists (KUJ), the Association of East African cartoonists (KATUNI), Cartoonists and Writers Syndicate (C&W) and a Board Member of Cartoonist Rights Network (CRN). GADO continues to do editorial cartoons for the Daily Nation and Sunday Nation, and The East African.

  • Gado. Crisis…? What Crisi?!. Nairobi: Buni Publishing, 2012.
  • Gado. The End of an Error. Nairobi: Sasa Sema Publications; 2006.
  • Gado. Abunuwasi. Nairobi: Sema Sasa Publications, 1996.
  • Gado. Demo-Crazy. Nairobi: Sasa Sema Publications. 2000.