BY ESE DIBEBI
The independent judging panel of the 2015 CNN MultiChoice African Journalist Awards has named five Nigerians among the nominees for this year’s awards.
The nominees from Nigeria are Femi Asu, Punch Newspaper; Adewale Olugbenga Emosu, tribuneonlineng.com; Ibanga Isine, Premium Times Newspaper; Kọ́lá Túbọ̀sún, Blogger at ktravula.com and Arukaino Umukoro, Punch Newspaper.
Extending hearty congratulations to the Nigerian nominees in the 20th edition of the prestigious awards, John Ugbe, Managing Director of MultiChoice Nigeria urged Nigerian journalists to be objective in their reporting, stating that objectivity promotes excellence in journalism.
Ugbe who revealed that the competition received entries from 39 countries across the continent, including French and Portuguese speaking Africa had 31 finalists from 15 countries, said, “MultiChoice is delighted to once again be associated with these prestigious awards that give respect to the work done by journalists across the African continent. We congratulate our finalists on their achievements and look forward to celebrating with the winners in Nairobi in October.“
He also explained that the finalists will enjoy an all-expense paid four-day programme of workshops, media forums and networking in Nairobi, Kenya, culminating in a Gala Award Ceremony in October 2015. In addition, winners from previous years will join this year’s finalists for a special evening to celebrate 20 years of the awards.
The independent judging panel, chaired by Ferial Haffajee, Editor-in-Chief, City Press, South Africa, includes: Debo Adesina, Editor-in-Chief, Guardian Newspapers, Nigeria; Nima Elbagir, Senior International Correspondent, CNN; Jean-Paul Gérouard, Editor-in-Chief, France Télévisions ; Fernando Gonçalves, Editor, Savana, Mozambique; Anton Harber, Caxton Professor of Journalism, University of the Witwatersrand; Joel Kibazo, Director of Communications and External Relations, African Development Bank Group; Amadou Mahtar Ba, Co-Founder and Executive Chairman, AllAfrica Global Media; Wanja Njuguna, Senior Lecturer, Polytechnic of Namibia & CNN Journalist of the year 2000; José Sebastião Paulo, Professor of Journalism, University Agostinho Neto, Angola; and, David Ohito, Digital Editor, The Standard Media Group, Kenya.
Speaking on the awards, Tony Maddox, Executive Vice-President and Managing Director of CNN International said, “The quality and breadth of entries in this, its 20th, year is testament to the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist Awards’ position as the most prestigious recognition for journalism across the continent. CNN is privileged to be involved in this important initiative to honor the outstanding work across multiple platforms, topics and journalistic disciplines.“
The competition is once again supported by the following sponsors, who continue to lend their valuable support to the awards: A24 Media, African Development Bank, Dow, Ecobank, GE, IPP Media and MSD (MSD is known as Merck in the U.S. and Canada).