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1995 - 2008 Finalists and Winners

Susan Purén Named CNN African Journalist Of The Year

For Release: 15 May 2002

Susan Purén from ‘Carte Blanche’ for M-Net/DSTV, South Africa, has been awarded the top prize at this year’s CNN African Journalist of the Year Awards ceremony. Purén was chosen among entrants from 26 nations across the African continent for her story, ‘China, War Child’.

Peter Matlare, Group Chief Executive, SABC and Eason Jordan, Chief News Executive and Newsgathering President of the CNN News Group, presented Purén with the award at a Gala Ceremony held at the Sandton Convention Centre this evening (Wednesday 15 May). The event was hosted by CNN in partnership with the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC).

Chairperson of the Judging Panel, Dr. Doyinsola Abiola, said: "the entire judging panel was unanimous in awarding Purén the top prize. Her entry demonstrated a level of journalistic excellence and integrity which all of us felt deserved the highest recognition. Purén’s work, along with that of all the finalists, demonstrates the sheer strength and quality of African journalism. Each and everyone of the finalists should stand proud of their work."

The overall CNN Journalist of the Year receives a trip to CNN Center, Atlanta, with complimentary flights courtesy of South African Airlines and a cash prize, in addition to the prize awarded to all category winners, which consists of a laptop, modem and printer and a cash prize.

‘These winners represent the best journalism in Africa,’ said Jordan. ‘CNN has always been dedicated to encouraging freedom of speech and maintaining journalistic integrity. We are delighted to see this competition continue to nurture such a diverse range of talent from an ever increasing number of African nations.’

Highlights of the Awards ceremony will be broadcast as follows: (all times Johannesburg time)


SABC 3Thursday 16 May at 22.50: (repeated on May 19 at 08.30) - 90 minutes highlights
*SABC AfricaFriday 17 May at 19.30: hour-long highlights
TV AfricaSunday 19 May at 21.00: hour-long highlights

(*available on MultiChoice DSTV to 44 countries in Africa)

CNN International

Inside AfricaSaturday 11 May at 18.30: Preview report on the CNN African Journalist of the Year Award.
Saturday 18 May at 18.30: Highlights of awards ceremony, profile of winners and discussion of journalism in Africa
World ReportSaturday 15 May at 06.30: Report previewing the awards.
Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 May at 06.30: Report highlighting the winners of the competition

The Competition, now in its seventh year, is held in partnership with SABC.

All related flights for the competition and South Africa-based accommodation are provided respectively by associate sponsor South African Airways (SAA) and by official hotel sponsor The Westcliff, Johannesburg (part of the Orient Express Group).

Other prestigious African companies on board as sponsors include: The Sandton Convention Centre; TV Africa; IPP Media Group, Tanzania; Merck Sharp Dohme (MSD); TIME Magazine; Global Media Alliance; Freedom Forum and Camerapix, Kenya.

Supplementary information on the competition, finalists and sponsors can be found at http://www.cnn.com/WORLD/africa/africanawards/.

Winners of the individual competition categories

General News Print:

Khadija Magardie, Mail & Guardian, South Africa

Television (two categories):

General News:

Susan Purén, Carte Blanche for M-Net/DSTV, South Africa

TV News Bulletin:

John Mwendwa Gitari, Kenya Television Network, Kenya


Angie Kapelianis, South African Broadcasting Corp, South Africa


Loretta Vanderpuye, Ghana Broadcasting Corp, Ghana


Patrice Douh-Lessou, Fraternité-Matin, Cote d’Ivoire


Carolyne Nakazibwe, The Monitor, Uganda


Declan Okpalaeke, Tell Magazine, Nigeria

Business / e-Commerce:

Isaac Masingati, Weekend Nation, Malawi

Free Press-Africa:

Arts & Culture:

Sara Blecher, South African Broadcasting Corp, South Africa

Mohamed Amin
(Photographic category):

Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi, The Daily News, Zimbabwe

Angie Kapelianis, South African Broadcasting Corp, South Africa
Topic: Museum Apartheid
Judges’ Citation: "With Angie’s piece, she utilises real sound…she’s setting the scene because in radio you have to set the scene — you’re painting a picture. You felt you were in that Apartheid Museum"

Carolyne Nakazibwe, The Monitor, Uganda
Topic: AIDS: 20 Years and counting
Judges’ Citation: "The writer has a sense of empowerment and a tone of hope if not optimism about getting to a point where one is starting to conquer an insurmountable problem."

Isaac Masingati,
Weekend Nation, Malawi
Topic: Chicken Business of Globalisation
Judges’ Citation: "This was a clear winner for one single reason — he took a complicated subject and made it simple."

Khadija Magardie, Mail & Guardian, South Africa
Topic: Things Fall Apart
Judges’ Citation: "The picture was painted of this town before being confronted with what the story was about. This kind of story is not told openly and Khadija was able to gain the confidence of the people in the town who then trusted her and told her their story."

Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi, The Daily News, Zimbabwe
Topic: Zimbabwe Farmers
Judges’ Citation: "The photograph represents the story that dominated Africa throughout the year and in the minds of the judges, the story of Zimbabwe was the story of 2001. The picture tells how the power relationship in that country has changed. It demonstrates the reversal that represents everything that Mugabe has been saying about Zimbabwe never becoming a colony again."

Sara Blecher, South African Broadcasting Corp, South Africa
Topic: Kobus and Dumile
Judges’ Citation: "Every single scene in every single aspect of the story was an eye opener. It was not surprising, it was not shocking but it was expanding our vision of South Africa. She did a superb job of enabling us to understand better and to get the bigger picture".

Loretta Vanderpuye, Ghana Broadcasting Corp, Ghana
Topic: Dangers of Exhaust Emissions
Judges’ Citation: "It’s a very visual story. It’s scary just watching the amount of fumes emitted, when you are sitting in the room you want to duck. The thing that really did it for the judges was that Loretta went all the way to Accra to see whether the city had found a way to help monitor its problem".

TELEVISION (TV news bulletin)
John Mwendwa Gitari
, Kenya Television Network, Kenya
Topic: Street Children Exploitation
Judges’ Citation: "The fact that he was not afraid to go behind the scenes to where these kids live, where these transactions actually take place, made for very compelling viewing. He went with an almost hidden camera situation to show that there are syndicates who exploit these children and managed to capture the scene."

Declan Okpalaeke, Tell Magazine, Nigeria
Topic: Wailing of a Wrestler
Judges’ Citation: "Every description of this wrestler is poetry in motion. He goes right into the mind of the subject he is talking about."

TELEVISION (General News)
Susan Purén
, Carte Blanche for M-Net/DSTV, South Africa
Topic: China, War Child
Judges’ Citation: "This is an incredibly powerful story about the treatment, attitude and abuse of children. She started off as a child soldier and was still only in her teens when she underwent that incredible journey. She leaves the viewers in wonderment at how a young person who has been through such a traumatic experience can tell her story with such clarity and dignity."

FRANCOPHONE (General News)
Patrice Douh-Lessou,
Fraternité-Matin, Cote d’Ivoire
Topic: Long Chemin de Croix de ces Marginaux
Judges’ Citation: "It is not often that you see a young male African journalist tackling the issue of abandoned, marginalized children. The piece pulled at our heartstrings but at the same time gave us statistics and figures, he went to the orphanages, forests and pits where the children were abandoned but also explained why this is happening."

Criteria for the awards: Entrants were asked to submit published or broadcast work, or professionally reproduced photographs completed in 2001 for the following categories: General News (print, radio and TV); Business/ e-Commerce; Environment; Free Press-Africa, Health/Medical; Mohamed Amin Photography category; Sport, Francophone General News and Arts & Culture. Reports were submitted in various formats, including photographs, video or audiotapes, written editorial or a combination. Marks were awarded for choice of subject, originality, style and clarity, the structure of the story, balance and level of research.

Note to Editors:

This year’s CNN African Journalist of the Year Awards was held in partnership with the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) who, in addition to their support of the Awards, will broadcast a highlights programme of the ceremony (see details above).

The Awards ceremony was held in association with South African Airways (SAA), and official hotel sponsor The Westcliff; with the support of sponsors The Sandton Convention Centre; TV Africa; IPP, Tanzania; Merck Sharp and Dohme (MSD) South Africa; TIME Magazine; Global Media Alliance. The Mohamed Amin Award for photography was sponsored by Camerapix, Kenya and The Freedom Forum.

Judging of the entries was completed in March by a distinguished panel of judges, including Chairperson of the Judging Panel Dr. Doyinsola Abiola; Managing Editor/Editor-in-Chief, Concord Press, Nigeria; John Battersby, Group Political Editor of Independent Newspapers, South Africa; Jerri Eddings, Executive Director for the Foundation of African Media Excellence (FAME), South Africa; Joel Kibazo, Director of Communications and Public Affairs Division at the Commonwealth Secretariat; Jeff Koinange, CNN Lagos Bureau Chief; Maimouna Mills, Host, Africa Journal, Voice of America; Mathatha Tsedu, Deputy Chief Executive: SABC News.

The competition is open to all professional journalists based in Africa, with head offices in Africa, who report on African issues.


Seema Alibhai
Tel: +44 207 693 0940/+44 7970 77 77 97/email: seema.alibhai@turner.com

Contact in South Africa:
Communications Services, Barbara Bester or Tracy Purto
Tel: +27 11 463 1011/ Fax: +27 11 463 1323/email: commserv@icon.co.za


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