Poet, rapper and actor Usaama Minhas has been crowned champion of  the 2018 Hammer and Tongue National Slam Final held at Royal Albert Hall. 

The final was the culmination of poetry slams and events happening all over the UK through-out the year, leading to a two-day Spoken Word extravaganza where over forty poets compete for the national title.

Asian Image:

He said, "In the final round I performed the winning poem, 'See Something, Say Something', which is a satirical look at state surveillance and persecution, foreign policy and Islamophobia."

"In times of increasing racism, Islamophobia, police brutality and state persecution - and the violent threat of Trumpism and xenophobia disguised as British patriotism - it can be easy to feel marginalized, otherized and un-wanted. 


"Becoming the National Champion in Britain is important because it reminds me that outside of the amplified events and extreme voices in the news and media, our social media echo chambers and the stories of violence we hear within our communities, the vast majority of everyday people want to hear our voices on the main stage and they want to champion our truths. 


"Thanks to God, an endless amount of chance occurrences and fate - the British people chose a brown-skinned Muslim performing poems about racism, sexism, white supremacy, Islamophobia and oppression as their winner. 

"Truth will always out-shine falsehood, and our shared humanity will always connect us beyond any other labels or categorizations. Love always wins - and I strive to always operate from a place of love.

"For everybody that’s been riding with me, I will ride for you till the wheels fall off. And for the London squad that was reppin’ heavy in the building - I can never thank this City enough. I’m blessed to be a part of this community of poets.

"Let it also be celebrated that a single decimal point away, the British people also championed a female black poet sharing her truth on the national stage."