Sama T. H Richard from Burkina Faso has been adjudged the 2019 West African journalist at the just ended West Africa Media Excellence Conference and Awards (WAMECA).
His reportage on persons with mental illness also won him the health category. In total, he walked away with a cash price of $2,500
Out of the over 700 entries for this year’s WAMECA award, Joy New’s Beryl Ernestina Richter, Seth Kwame Boateng, Emmanuel Kwesi Debrah and Justice Baidoo were finalists for three different categories and received certificates of merit.
Joy News/Luv FM’s Kwesi Debrah
The awards were in seven categories: Telecommunication and ICT award, Human Right, Health, SDGs, Business and SME, Anti-Corruption and Investigative reporting.
Joy New’s Beryl Ernestina Richter
All 21 finalists were presented with certificates of merits while winners of the various categories were given cash prize ranging from $500 to $2,000.
The theme for this year’s event was “Social Media, Fake News and Elections in Africa”.
Guest Speaker for the event and Commissioner of South Africa, Pansy Tlakula urged Journalist should re-commit to the code of ethics in this era of fake news.
"In this age of fake news and disinformation, anything goes. Let's go back to the ethics of reporting truthfully, of reporting objectively, of giving the other side the right to reply."
She also noted that the unlucrative nature of journalism as a profession was driving many into several other fields of professions. She, therefore, called journalist to reach out to one another.
"I would also like to challenge the older generation of journalists to train and continue to hold the hands of those who are coming up. Journalism is a very difficult profession. It is not lucrative and therefore a calling" she said.
JoyNews’ Justice Baidoo
JoyNews’ Seth Kwame Boateng