CNN International and MultiChoice this week officially launched the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist 2016 Awards.
The competition for African nationals based on the continent welcomes entries from journalists creating content targeting an African audience.
A new category has been added this year, The Maggie Eales Young Journalist Award. This is named in honour of the late Maggie Eales, the CNN executive and former journalist who during her 20 year career at CNN was the driving force behind the development and growth of the African Journalist Awards. This award reflects Maggie’s enduring passion for nurturing young talent and will recognise the work of journalists starting out in their career, who demonstrate exceptional storytelling and the ability to identify a story and tell it with conviction. There are no restrictions on subject matter for this category and entrants must be born after 1 Jan 1990.
Tony Maddox, Executive Vice President and Managing Director of CNN International, said: “Africa is an increasingly important part of the global story, and CNN reflects that. We are committed to the African story, not just editorially, but also in terms of supporting its own journalistic enterprise through the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist Awards. I am immensely proud of our long-term commitment to Africa and there is no better example of that than these Awards. We’re particularly proud this year to honour the incredible contribution Maggie Eales made in shaping the Awards into the continent’s finest celebration of its journalism. It’s fitting that young journalists who symbolise the next generation for journalism in Africa now have an award to aspire to.”
Tim Jacobs, CEO MultiChoice Africa, said: “The longevity of these Awards is indicative of how these awards continue to play a meaningful role for the advancement of outstanding journalism across the continent. I’m confident that the 2016 instalment of the Awards will continue to unearth extraordinary African talent whose tireless work and search for the truth may otherwise not receive the recognition it deserves.”
Burkinabé journalist Hyacinthe Boowurosigue Sanou was awarded the top prize at the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist 2015 Awards ceremony.
His work, ‘Nuit du 29 octobre à Azalaï : Nous étions à la chambre 143’ appeared in Burkinabé daily print newspaper L’Observateur Paalga and was chosen from entries spanning 39 nations across the African continent.
Since the first Awards in 1995, the competition has grown in size and status to become Africa’s most prestigious media event.
In 2015, a ‘Highlights Programme’ of the ceremony, held in Nairobi, Kenya, was broadcast across Africa, plus the UK, USA and the Caribbean.
Open to journalists working in any medium, this year the competition will recognise excellence in the following categories:
· Culture Award
· Dow Technology & Innovation Reporting Award
· Ecobank Economics & Business Award
· Features Award
· Francophone General News Award – Electronic Media
· GE Energy & Infrastructure Award
· Mohamed Amin Photographic Award
· MSD Health & Medical Award
· News Impact Award
· Portuguese Language General News Awards
· Press Freedom Award
· Sport Reporting Award
· The African Development Bank Environment Award
· The Maggie Eales Young Journalist Award
From these category winners, an independent judging panel choose the overall winner – The CNN MultiChoice African Journalist 2016.
Finalists in the 2016 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 2016 will have the opportunity to participate in the CNN Journalism Fellowship at CNN Headquarters in Atlanta.
Once again this year, the competition has become even easier for journalists to enter, with submissions being made via the entry form websitewww.africa.cnnjournalistaward.com.
The ‘CNN African Journalist of the Year Competition’ was established in August 1995 to encourage, promote and recognise excellence in African journalism. In the early nineties Edward Boateng, then Regional Director of Turner Broadcasting (CNN’s parent company), was travelling around the African continent on business. During his travels he became concerned about the lack of respect journalists received and he decided to try and help them gain recognition for their hard work and commitment.
Working with Edward to launch the first competition were Gary Streiker, then CNN Nairobi Bureau Chief, the late esteemed photographer Mohamed Amin and the late Esom Alintah, then Secretary General of the African Business Roundtable. The Competition is for African nationals based on the continent and welcomes entries from journalists who have produced a story whose primary audience are based in Africa.
The first Awards Ceremony took place in Ghana on August 11, 1995. There were six winners that year from Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria and Uganda. Since then, 19 more Awards Ceremonies have been held across the continent and the competition has grown into 14 categories which includes a newly added category: The Maggie Eales Young Journalist Award. This is named in honour of the late Maggie Eales, the CNN executive and former journalist who during her 20 year career at CNN was the driving force behind the development and growth of the African Journalist Awards.