Winners Of 2017 Global Shining Light Awards

Premium Times’ Editor-in-Chief, Musikilu Mojeed, and award-winning Freelance Investigative Journalist, Emmanuel Mayah, have jointly won the 2017 edition of the Global Shining Light Awards.

Winners of the seventh Global Shining Light Awards were announced at the Global Investigative Journalism Conference in Johannesburg, South Africa. The prize honors investigative journalism conducted in a developing or transitioning country, done under threat, duress, or in the direst of conditions.

The 2017 Global Shining Light Awards drew a record 211 submissions from 67 countries, more than double the number of entries in the previous GSL Award in 2015. The award this year is for stories published or broadcast between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2016.

Two investigations were awarded first place: Inside the Massive Extrajudicial Killings in Nigeria’s South-Eastand How the Onitsha Massacre of Pro-Biafra Supporters was Coordinated,” on extrajudicial killings of a minority ethnic group in Nigeria, by Premium Times; and Project No. 1,” by Beladi TV channel, on corruption in Iraq’s Ministry of Education.

In addition, the judges honoured two other projects with citations of excellence: Making a Killing,” for the joint investigation that exposed an arms pipeline between Central and Eastern Europe and the Middle East worth €1.2 billion; and Gujarat Files: Anatomy of a Coverup,”, for an undercover investigation revealing India’s top officials’ complicity in the 2002 Gujarat Riots.

According to Sheila Coronel, Academic Affairs Dean of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, one of the judges:

“The judges were particularly impressed with the solo investigations that were conducted with minimal resources amid real threats and intimidation.

By honoring the extraordinary work of these journalists at risk, we pay tribute to all the good work being done in so many places where courageous journalists keep the flame of watchdog reporting alive.”

The winners were chosen from a dozen finalists from 11 countries, and included exposing false claims of a corruption crackdown in Serbia, gold smuggling in Peru, land theft in Brazil, judicial bribery in Ghana, financial manipulation in China, vigilante killings in India, military conscript murders in Egypt, and corruption among Azerbaijan’s ruling family.

An international panel of judges selected this year’s winners and found the competition extraordinary.

The winners of the 2017 Global Shining Light Awards are:

Winner (Joint)

Inside the Massive Extrajudicial Killings in Nigeria’s South-East” and “How the Onitsha Massacre of Pro-Biafra Supporters was Coordinated,” Premium Times, Nigeria (2016). Reporter: Emmanuel Mayah; Editor: Musikilu Mojeed

A two-month long investigation by Mayah uncovered multiple mass graves, lending support to allegations that police and military forces have been targeting a minority ethnic group for abuse and extrajudicial killings. Following reports that included photo evidence, human rights groups called for an independent probe and the army announced another investigation.

Winner (Joint)

Project No. 1,”Beladi TV channel, Iraq (2016), Investigation: Asaad Al-Zalzali; Photography: Thaer Khalid

When $200 million allocated for public schools in Iraq went missing, reporter Al-Zalzali followed the money, which led him to a bank and to another country. The story exposed the magnitude of corruption in the country’s Ministry of Education and led to a conviction and a settlement that returned half the stolen money.

Citation of Excellence

Making a Killing,” Balkan Investigative Reporting Network and the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (2016) Reporters: Lawrence Marzouk, Ivan Angelovski and Miranda Patrucic; Additional reporting: Atanas Tchobanov, Dusica Tomovic, Jelena Cosic, Jelena Svircic, Lindita Cela, RISE Moldova, Pavla Holcova, Stevan Dojcinovic and Pavle Petrovic; Editors: Drew Sullivan, Jody McPhillips, Rosemary Armao, Gordana Igric and Anita Rice

The joint investigation uncovered an arms pipeline between Central and Eastern Europe and the Middle East worth €1.2 billion. The weapons flow, reporters found, were being financed by Saudi Arabia, Jordan, the UAE and Turkey, and systematically diverted to extremist groups, including the Islamic State.

After the story was published, the European Union announced it would monitor the flow of weapons and several countries reviewed their policies.

Citation of Excellence

Gujarat Files: Anatomy of a Coverup,” self-published, India (2016). Rana Ayyub

Reporter Rana Ayyub went undercover for nine months to record top officials speaking candidly about the 2002 riots in Gujarat, which left at least 1000 Muslims dead. When one of the targets of Ayyub’s investigation was poised to become the country’s new prime minister, Indian media houses got cold feet. Despite threats and surveillance, Ayyub self-published the transcripts that revealed complicity by India’s top officials in the attacks.


The Global Shining Light Award is sponsored by the Global Investigative Journalism Network, an association of 155 nonprofit groups in 68 countries that work to support and spread investigative reporting. Founded in 2003, GIJN helps organize regional and international conferences and workshops, assists in the formation and sustainability of organizations dedicated to investigative and data journalism, and provides resources and networking services for investigative journalists worldwide.

For more information contact: secretariat@gijn.org.

UNILAG obtains NBC TV license in Nigeria [2017]

The University of Lagos, Akoka (UNILAG), has become the first university in Nigeria to be granted a license to operate a television station.

Ralph Akinfeleye, a professor and Chairman of UNILAG Radio and TV, confirmed that the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), granted the TV licence to the institution on Thursday, November 9 [2017].

The commissioning of the TV was held on November 11 [2017] at the Department of Mass Communication of the university.

The Vice Chancellor of the institution, Rahman Bello, on behalf of the university management, congratulated members of staff, students and the entire university community on the milestone.

The Mass Communication department of the University also pioneered the first campus radio station in Nigeria.

Winners of 2017 Imbube African Book Festival and Awards

Benjamin Nwosu, Akandu Chinenye, Gertrude Uzon and Ochoche Elumah have emerged winners of the 2017 Imbube African Book Festival and Awards.

The four winners receive a cash prize of 200,000 Naira at the inaugural event organised by NerveFlo.

The Imbube African Book Festival and Awards is a literary event aimed at drawing attention to the growing body of literary works coming out of the African continent while holding discussions on literary trends and publications.

In addition, Oyindamola Oluwashola Abbaty and Gideon Chukwuemeka Ogbonna won an Infinix Smart x5010 phone and the AfriVR virtual reality headset, respectively for winning the Most Outstanding story (outside the top votes).

According to Silas Okwoche, founder and coordinator of the Imbube African Book Festival and Award:

“This is our first move towards rewarding young people for their interest in writing and also starting up an important discussion on the role of books in our society.

We will build upon this and ensure that there is diversity of voices in our literary space.”

NerveFlo is a unified digital content marketplace that allows African creators sell their ebooks/music/films directly to mobile and web consumers. The NerveFlo marketplace works brilliantly for emerging markets because it addresses the key bandwidth limitations and digital piracy limitations in these markets.

Writers, artists and film-makers can now signup and sell their works globally and locally without piracy fear and with hope for new streams of revenue via NerveFlo.

Oluwaseun Otitoola Wins 2017 9mobile Photography Competition

Oluwaseun Otitoola, has emerged the winner of the 2017 edition of the 9mobile Photography Competition, a talent development initiative of 9mobile.

Oluwaseun Otitoola won the competition with his entry titled: “Fragment of CMS Bookshop Building”, triumphing over two other finalists – Amanda Ihemebiri – “The NestOil Tower” and Taiwo Omotosho, for “Lines Side by Side”.

According to the 24-year-old Oluwaseun Otitoola:

“I didn’t have a camera of my own but I love photography so I borrowed my friend’s camera to participate. I chose ‘Fragment of CMS Bookshop Building’ because of the symbolic status of the building and its environment which tells the story of Lagos in the past and the Lagos we know today.”

Ikenna Ogbenta, emerged winner of the voters’ choice category with his entry titled “Skies and Scrapers”. He won after pulling the highest number of votes online.

Chief Executive Officer, 9mobile, Boye Olusanya said:

“9mobile Photography Competition is not about winning but about talent, creativity and innovation. The aim is to engage and empower budding photographers to fulfill their passion by using the power of digital media, online, social and mobile technology to capture compelling images that tell authentic Nigerian stories.

Over the nine years of our existence, we have consistently been at the forefront of promoting talent and creative development among the youth across different sectors such as education, art, literature, science, sports and entertainment amongst others.

A bold new generation of Nigerian photographers is emerging to capture the changes and challenges people are facing across the country and we are glad to see young people participate. It gives us pride that we are playing a crucial role in nurturing their dreams.”

Mr. Olusanya thanked the judging panel, comprising Hakeem Salaam, Kola Oshalusi and Kunle Awolowo – who are all accomplished international photographers – for doing an excellent job of ensuring that the entire process was fair and of the highest standard.

This year’s edition of the annual 9mobile Photography Competition kicked off on August 7 with a call for entries, which closed on September

The competition serves as a platform to discover, reward and empower budding photographers to fulfill their passion and capture compelling images that celebrate our Nigerian heritage.

Odinaka Anudu Is Nominated To Investigate In Guateng [2017]

University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, has nominated Odinaka Anudu as one of the five Africans to participate in a fully-funded investigation in Guateng.

Odinaka Anudu, a BusinessDay journalist won the Industrialisation and Development category and will be guided by John Bailey, an international and senior journalist for eNCA, a 24-hour television news broadcaster focusing on South African and African stories.

Anudu’s winning project deals with the nature and type of skills transferred to South Africans and Africans in general by Guateng-based vehicle manufacturers and assemblers. He will travel to South Africa in early November [2017] to investigate the story and present his findings to the university. He will work with Zheng Qingting, who was described as ‘a very competent Chinese journalist’.

As a development economist, philosopher and journalist, Odinaka Anudu manages BusinessDay’s Start-Up Digest and Real Sector Watch sections, covering SMEs, manufacturing and trade. He was formerly the secretary-general of the National Drug Abuse Control Association. He has received local and international trainings in journalism, authoring two books, ‘Top-Class English for Schools and Colleges’ and ‘Drug Abuse and Our Future: Who Will Bell the Cat’.

Odinaka Anudu won the 2016 Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) Reporter of the Year and was trained by the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) on trade negotiation, having been nominated by ECOWAS.

Anudu was nominated alongside four other journalists from Botswana, Cameroon, Uganda and Liberia after a highly competitive scrutiny of investigation projects and stories.