African journalists honoured in Sanlam journalism awards

South African journalist Claire Bisseker has been named the 2019 Sanlam Financial Journalist of The Year award winner - making it the third time she has won the prestigious award.

The Sanlam Awards for Excellence in Financial Journalism took place at an evening gala on November 12, recognising exceptional financial reporting in South Africa and the continent at large.

Convening judge Nixon Kariithi said the overall award recognises attributes such as consistent professionalism, influential reporting and inspirational contributions.

“What made Claire stand out was her ability to pick the key stories in the news cycle and convey these to the public in a way that helps readers have a deeper understanding of the issues prevailing in the South African economy and beyond,” Kariithi said in a statement.

On the judging panel, Kariithi was joined by other industry leaders Xhanti Payi, Ylva Rodny-Gumede, Ulrich Joubert and frayintermedia CEO Paula Fray.

Judges were tasked with determining winners from a total of 113 entries received. Entry submissions were produced before the COVID-19 pandemic. A category that has grown since its introduction to the awards in 2013 was the Africa Growth Story award.

The 2019 African growth story winner was Tom Collins from African Business Magazine in Kenya. Nigerian journalist Caleb Ojewale was first runner-up and the second runners-up prize was jointly awarded to Isaac Anyaogu from Nigeria and Omar Mohammed from Kenya.

This year, new judges joined the panel, bringing continental experience and diversity. They were Angela Agaowike from Nigeria, David Moepeng from Botswana, Tom Indimuli from Kenya, and Richard-Stovin Bradford based in the United Kingdom.

Sanlam Group CEO Paul Hanratty commended the work of financial journalists and said society needs strong media.

“In Africa, financial journalists have a profound impact in keeping us informed, helping to uncover corruption, tell our strong growth stories and act as a watchdog for companies, government, markets and the economy,” he said.

The winner of each category receives a prize of R25 000, while the overall winner receives an additional R35 000 and the best newcomer prize amounts to R20 000.

Find the full list of winners here.

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