7 Kenyans Named Finalists for 2014 CNN Multichoice African Journalist Awards

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Finalists in the 19th installment of the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist Awards were announced through a Press Release today by Ferial Haffajee, Chair of the independent judging panel.

Bob Koigi of Farmbizafrica.com, John Muchangi Njiru of the Star Newspaper, Joseph Mathenge, a Freelancer for the Saturday Nation, Anne Mawathe & Rashid Ibrahim of Citizen TV, Patrick Mayoyo of the Daily Nation, Christine Muthee & Oliver Oscar Ochanda of Media Development in Africa (MEDEVA) and Evelyn Watta of Sportsnewsarena.com were the Kenyan journalists named among a crop of 28 finalists.

Together with the other finalists, they will enjoy an all-expenses paid four day programme of workshops, media forums and networking in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania culminating in a Gala Award Ceremony on Saturday 18 October 2014.

The host for the evening is CNN International anchor and correspondent Isha Sesay, host of ‘CNN NewsCenter’. Entries were published or broadcast in 2013 for the following awards: The Coca-Cola Company Economics & Business Award; Culture Award; Mohamed Amin Photographic Award; Environment Award; Press Freedom Award; MSD Health & Medical Award; Sport Reporting Award; News Impact Award; GE Energy & Infrastructure Award; Francophone General News Awards; Portuguese Language General News Awards.

This year the competition received entries from 38 countries across the continent, including French and Portuguese speaking Africa. The other finalists from 10 countries were:  

Daniel Biaou Adje, ORTB, Benin

Safia Berkouk, El Watan, Algeria

Vinayak Bhardwaj & Tabelo Timse, M&G Centre for Investigative Journalism, Mail & Guardian, South Africa

Romão Brandão, Jornal OPAÍS, Angola

Sean Christie, Freelance for Landbouweekblad and The Mail & Guardian, South Africa

Obinna Emelike, Business Day, Nigeria

Ben Ezeamalu & Emmanuel Ogala, Premium Times, Nigeria

Dickson Ng’hily, The Guardian, Tanzania

Olatunji Ololade, The Nation Newspaper, Nigeria

Bayo Olupohunda, Columnist, Punch Newspaper, Nigeria

Ossène Ouattara, Infoduzanzan.com, Côte d’Ivoire

Brito Simango, Televisão de Moçambique, Moçambique

Joy Summers & Susan Comrie, Mnet Carte Blanche, South Africa

Suy Kahofi, Freelance for West Africa Democracy Radio, Senegal

Paballo Thekiso, Saturday Star, South Africa

Bento Venancio, Jornal Domingo, Moçambique

Announcing the finalists, chairperson of the independent judging panel Ferial Haffajee said: “2013 was a huge news year, and the stories from our continent set a global agenda. The judges were pleased with the quality of entries, and were impressed by the depth of specialist beat reporting. In addition, they noted the growing sophistication of the use of images and pictures across all platforms.”

The independent judging panel, chaired by Ferial Haffajee, Editor-in-Chief, City Press, South Africa includes: Debo Adesina, Editor-in-Chief, Guardian Newspapers, Nigeria; Betty Dindi, Managing Editor of QTV, Nation Media Group, Kenya; Jean-Paul Gérouard, Editor-in-Chief, France Télévisions ; Anton Harber, Caxton Professor of Journalism at the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa; Joel Kibazo, Director of Communications, Africa Development Bank; Arlindo Lopes, Regional Regulatory GM, MultiChoice Angola; Amadou Mahtar Ba, Co-Founder and Executive Chairman, AllAfrica Global Media;  Kim Norgaard, CNN Africa Bureau Chief; Aires Walter dos Santos,  Account Executive, iSenta Comunicação & Imagem SA, Angola.

The competition is once again supported by the following sponsors, who continue to lend their valuable support to the awards: The Coca-Cola Company; Ecobank; GE Africa; IPP Media, Tanzania; Merck Sharp & Dohme (MSD) and A24 Media.

Tony Maddox, Executive Vice-President and Managing Director of CNN International said: “I have witnessed the quality and excellence of work in this competition strengthen year on year, and am proud that it continues to maintain its place as the most prestigious Pan African journalist awards. Just as CNN encourages, promotes and recognises excellence in journalism at all levels, we are particularly pleased to be able to support journalists who represent our future.”

Nico Meyer, CEO MultiChoice Africa said: “MultiChoice Africa congratulates all finalists and thanks our esteemed panel of judges for taking time to select the very best of African journalism.   As a company born and bred in Africa we have an unmatched passion for the continent and believe in making long term and sustainable invests in order to enable development and to create a meaningful legacy in the countries in which we operate. These awards demonstrate CNN’s and MultiChoice’s commitment to the development of media in Africa, Meyer said – and this is a very special year as we celebrate our 10th year of our partnership.”

Imtiaz Patel, Group CEO of MultiChoice South Africa said: “As a long-time partner to CNN in these awards, we know the prestige that comes with being a finalist. I would therefore like to extend our best wishes to the finalists – thank you for telling the stories of Africa. We look forward to celebrating your journalistic excellence at the awards in October.”