Tony Maddox, Executive Vice President and Managing Director of CNN International, said: “We are delighted that for the 2008 CNN MultiChoice African Journalist Awards, we are returning to the awards birth place of Ghana. As the awards continue to grow in stature, strength and prestige, it is fitting that Ghana be chosen as the host country. It is wonderful that entries from across the continent continue to grow, making this a truly pan-African event.”
Eben Greyling, CEO MultiChoice Africa, said: “Our continued partnership with CNN, to support these journalism awards actively demonstrates our support for media that carries Africa ’s voice on local and global issues. The awards have grown over the years in importance and meet a key need to encourage, showcase and celebrate the best that the continent has to offer in journalism. We look forward yet again to the challenge of finding and rewarding new stories and voices from the continent.”
Richard M. Kavuma from Uganda was awarded the top prize at the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist 2007 Awards ceremony. Richard, who works for The Weekly Observer in Uganda won for his series of articles, ‘To assess the country’s performance on Millennium Development Goals’, which were chosen from among 1670 entries from 40 nations across the African continent.
Richard Kavuma on his part said: “Winning CNN Multichoice African Journalist of the Year Award has been the most humbling, yet most beautiful thing to have happened to me. The award has transformed me from a simple messenger amplifying the people’s voice to a national hero inundated with congratulatory messages and stopped by ordinary people in the streets.
But it has also given me access to more platforms and podiums to speak about the plight of the people that my winning articles focussed on. Since July, I have granted numerous interviews to radio, TV, newspaper, and Magazine journalists from Africa and Europe. I have addressed various audiences including University students and have been recognised by various organisations and companies. The Award has strengthened my motivation and put me in a strong position to live my personal and professional dreams.
As the first Ugandan to win this prestigious award, I am still congratulated by my colleagues, many of them saying “Man, that was big” while others tell me they plan to enter the 2008 award. It seems my award has brought not only pride to my colleagues but also a greater realisation of their own potential as journalists. I therefore hope that you too submit your work at least to see how it compares with that of your professional colleagues. Like me, you may be in for the biggest surprise of your life.”
Lanre Oyetade, Group Business Editor - 11.01.2008
THE NIGERIAN TRIBUNE