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PROF Serpell with UNZA members of staff after the farewell ceremony in the Senate Chambers. Picture right, Prop Serpell with late wife Namposya, daughter Zewelanji, her sons and students at Tiananmen Square in China in 2013.

Serpell bids farewell to UNZA

A SOMBRE mood gripped the audience when Professor Robert Serpell broke down while presenting the Chisha Serpell Award, which is named after his late daughter, at the University of Zambia (UNZA) where he has served for 42 years but is now leaving following retirement.
It all happened last month following the launch of The Old Drift by her celebrated novelist daughter Namwali, and the award, which is received by the best graduating student in French Language at UNZA, was emotively reminding him of Chisha, his genius offspring who had studied French at UNZA and aced it.
“We’ve sponsored this award since 1999 in memory of Chisha,” announced Prof Serpell amid an environment of high emotions as the 2019 recipient Aliness Banda stepped forward to be honoured.
But whereas the award evoked sad memories, July 10, 2019 affixed a smile on Prof Serpell’s face as UNZA management led by acting vice-chancellor Prof Enala Tembo-Mwase hosted a farewell ceremony for him to mark the magnificent end of his service to Zambia’s premier university as a founding, distinguished and award-winning professor of psychology and former vice-chancellor.