BY EMEKA AGINAM
CNN International in partnership with MultiChoice have officially announced the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist 2014 awards.
The competition for African nationals based on the continent welcomes entries from journalists creating content targeting an African audience.
For one thing, the competition has become even easier for journalists to enter, with submissions being made via the entry form website http://www.cnnmcaja.cnn.com.
Open to journalists working in any medium, this year the competition will recognize excellence in the following categories: Culture Award, The Coca-Cola Company Economics & Business Award, GE Energy & Infrastructure Award (*NEW*), Environment Award, MSD Health & Medical Award, News Impact Award (*NEW*), Mohamed Amin Photographic Award, Press Freedom Award, Sport Reporting Award, Francophone General News Awards – Electronic media & Print, and Portuguese Language General News Awards – Electronic media & Print
From these category winners, an independent judging panel will choose the overall winner – The CNN MultiChoice African Journalist 2014.
Finalists in the 2014 competition will participate in a finalists’ programme that will include a media forum and networking opportunities with senior journalists, editors, business leaders and media owners from across the continent, culminating in a gala awards ceremony later in the year.
The CNN MultiChoice African Journalist 2014 will have the opportunity to participate in the CNN Journalism Fellowship at CNN Headquarters in Atlanta.
Speaking on the award, Tony Maddox, Executive Vice President and Managing Director of CNN International, said: “Since the very beginning, these Awards have discovered and rewarded superlative African journalism across the continent.
“With even more of Africa’s storytellers now able to share their work with us, we expect even more outstanding entries. The categories this year also perfectly mirror the reality of today’s Africa’s multi-platform media scene. As Africa’s leading news provider, we’re delighted to play our part in supporting the excellent journalism these Awards yield annually.”
For Imtiaz Patel, Group CEO for MultiChoice South Africa, “MultiChoice South Africa is proud of our continued involvement in these awards.
“We are particularly proud to play a role in amplifying the voice of journalists across the African continent; it’s vital that the stories of Africa and its people are heard across the world. We look forward to hearing the stories as told by the entrants into the 2014 competition.”
It would be recalled that South Africans Msindisi Fengu and Yandisa Monakali, from South Africa were awarded the top prize at the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist 2013 Awards ceremony.
Their work ‘Investigation series: School hostels of Shame’, which appeared in South African daily print newspaper Daily Dispatch investigated the appalling conditions being experienced by thousands of pupils in the Eastern Cape of South Africa, uncovering hygiene and safety risks in school hostels and lifting the lid on corruption within the education department. It was chosen from 1387 entries from 42 nations across the African continent.
Over the past 19 years, the competition has grown in size and status to become Africa’s most prestigious media event. In 2013, a ‘Highlights Programme’ of the ceremony, held in Cape Town, South Africa, was broadcast in 46 African countries, plus the UK, USA and the Caribbean