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Chuks Udo Okonta
Ms Nike Popoola of Nigeria’s Punch newspaper has won the Pan-African Reinsurance Journalist of the Year Award.
Winners of the Continental Reinsurance Pan-African Reinsurance Journalism Awards were announced by Larrey Chetty, Media Secretary for the Seychelles Media Commission at an awards ceremony yesterday in Mahe, Seychelles.
This year’s inaugural Pan-African Re/Insurance Journalism Awards received close to 100 entries from French and English speaking journalists from across Africa.
Ms Popoola won the award with her article “Battle of the wits: local, foreign firms jostle for reinsurance deals”. In her article, she explores the challenges the sector faces as African reinsurers struggle to gain a bigger share of the business in their respective countries, which is largely given to foreign companies and how retention of premiums in local markets will boost GDP in African countries.
Steve Mbogo was awarded Best Re/Insurance Industry Feature Article for his story “From small acorns grow mighty oaks”. In his article, Steve Mbogo explores micro insurance in Kenya, a form of cover that paves the way for the development of corporate insurance in the country.
Evans Boah-Mensah of Ghana’s Business and Financial Times newspaper was awarded Best Re/Insurance Industry Analysis and Commentary for his article “Life insurance growing through micro and risk schemes”.
Continental Reinsurance initiated the awards in 2015 to recognise and acknowledge the good work of media on the continent. Journalists were required to demonstrate how their articles raised awareness and understanding of the re/insurance sector in Africa.
Dr Femi Oyetunji, Group MD / CEO of Continental Reinsurance Plc said: “The insurance and reinsurance sector has a valuable role to play in Africa’s economic growth and development. That’s why Continental Reinsurance is committed to developing and recognising the respected contribution of journalists in Africa.”
One of the members of the international judging panel Ms Léone Ouedraogo said: “As a journalist, to see your work recognised is one of the best feelings on earth. It was a privilege to be involved in this important initiative.”
Dr Oyetunji also said: “We are very pleased with the number of entries and honour every journalist’s contribution. We hope these awards will inspire media from across the continent to participate in next year’s awards.”
The independent, international judging panel consisted of Professor Jonathan Grun, Mr Michael Wilson, Mr William Wallis, Ms Julia Graham, Mr Afif Ben Yedder and Ms Léone Ouedraogo.
“We are greatly honoured that we could rely on a high calibre judging panel comprised of well-respected media experts who dedicated their time to support Africa’s growth through journalistic efforts,” Dr Oyetunji concluded.
About the judges
Professor Jonathan Grun, Editor-in-Chief and current Emeritus Editor of the Press Association, London – Professor Jonathan Grun holds the Professional Chair of Journalism at the University of Sheffield. He is also the secretary of the Editors’ Code of Practice Committee.
William Wallis, African Affairs specialist at the Financial Times – Wallis has travelled and worked in more than 40 countries in Africa and the Middle East in a career as a journalist spanning 23 years. Wallis joined the FT in 1998 as West African correspondent based in Lagos, Nigeria, and went on to become the FT’s Central and East Africa correspondent in Nairobi, acting subsequently as the newspaper’s Middle East correspondent in Cairo and then for seven years is Africa editor. Before joining the newspaper he worked for BBC and Reuters.
Afif Ben Yedder, Founder of IC Publications Group – IC Publication is one of the world’s leading sources of analysis and debate on African political and economic issues, reaching over 2.6 million loyal readers in more than 100 countries. The Group has headquarters in London and Paris and affiliate offices in major cities in Africa.
Michael Wilson, Business and Economics Editor –Wilson’s media career stretches over thirty years. He joined Sky Television at its inception in 1989 and anchored nearly all of Sky’s coverage of major business events. He also wrote for national and international publications and his TV reports have been watched worldwide. Since leaving Sky in 2009, Michael has broadcast for the BBC, ITV, Fox News, Al Jazeera and LBC, and more recently he was Director of Business and Economics Editor of Arise Networks, a global television service aimed at Africa.
Ms Léone Ouedraogo, presenter at BBC Afrique – Based in London, Ms Ouedraogo presents BBC Afrique’s flagship TV show BBC Infos, as well as their weekend programme BBC Eco.
Ms Julia Graham, Technical Director of AIRMIC – Ms Graham is the former AIRMIC chair and President of the Federation of European Risk Management Associations (FERMA). In the past, she was also the Director of Risk Management and Insurance at DLA Piper.