The organiser of the award, Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), on Wednesday, announced 21 journalists as finalists of the award, which is now in its 5th year.
The MFWA stated that it received 711 entries from 14 countries across West Africa.
It added that winners would be announced at the award ceremony, which would be graced by media experts, high-level personalities and delegates from the sub-regional bodies and civil society groups.
“The event will host West Africa’s foremost media defence lawyer, Femi Falana, SAN, as Guest of Honour. The renowned human rights lawyer will present the award to the overall best journalist in West Africa.”
Also shortlisted for the awards are nine other Nigerian journalists, including an ICIR former reporter Uthman Samad and a freelance reporter with The ICIR Gideon Arinze.
All finalists will receive a certificate of merit. Ultimate winners will receive plaques, certificates and cash prizes.
The organiser added that the 21 finalists would also be inducted as fellows of the MFWA’s Journalism for Change Network and would be offered regular training opportunities both locally and internationally to enhance their capacity to influence positive change in society through journalism.
“West Africa Media Excellence Conference and Awards (WAMECA 2021) is supported by MTN-Ghana, the US Embassy in Ghana, US-based William and Flora Hewlett Foundation; Open Society Institute for West Africa (OSIWA), and Stanbic Bank Ghana. The event is also supported by about 65 media partners across West Africa.”