2007 Finalists and Winners

Richard M. Kavuma, Uganda

Winner: Print General News Award and CNN MultiChoice African Journalist 2007

Bio:Richard has risen from being a freelance journalist with The Monitor Newspaper in 1996 to a senior staff writer at the Weekly Observer, and likes to focus on investigative work, peace, conflict and human rights reporting as well as development journalism. Richard is a graduate of Makerere University, where he earned a B.A in Social Science, majoring in International Relations. He was Highly Commended in the 2005 CNN MultiChoice African Journalist awards and is also a three times winner of the UNFPA/Population Secretariat award for reporting Population and Development issues.

Toyin Akinosho, Nigeria

Winner: Economics & Business Award

Bio: Toyin is contributing editor to the Africa Oil and Gas Report and co-editor of the Lagos City Arts Guide. Toyin's journalism career began in 1984 when he was staff writer and Energy Reporter for the Guardian Newspapers. He moved from there to This Week, Lagos where he headed up the General Features Section. Since then he has produced a weekly column on The Arts for The Champion, Sunday Times and Evening Times newspapers in Nigeria. He holds a B Sc in Geology.

Mary Corrigall, South Africa

Winner: Tourism Award

Bio: Having started her career as a fashion designer, Mary moved to journalism in 2002. Her first job in media was at The Citizen as a senior copy and layout editor. While working here she also studied for her B.A. in English and Art History from Unisa. She then worked as a freelance writer for a range of publications such as Cape Argus, Sunday Tribune, SA Art Times, Conde Nast House & Garden and Art South Africa. She is now feature writer and art critic at The Sunday Independent, South Africa.

Irène Ndzana Fouda, Cameroon

Winner: Francophone TV/Radio Award

Bio: Irène joined Cameroon Radio Télévision (CRTV) over 6 years ago, having just gained a diploma in communications. She is currently working on the radio side of the station and regularly produces reports for the various radio programmes. Irène also presents several shows on the radio station including the society programme 'Images de Société', 'La minute de l'homme de la rue' and 'La Page Pratique' which gives listeners practical advice for all aspects of their lives.

Albert Gachiri, Kenya

Winner: Environment Award

Bio: Albert has worked for Nation Television in Kenya since 2002. In his role of TV reporter he scripts, edits and voices raw footage in both English and Kiswahili for NTV's news bulletins. In addition to this, he has produced feature stories and been on international assignments in Zanzibar, China and USA. He holds a B.A. in Sociology/English/Literature and a Post graduate Diploma in Mass Communication.

Adri Kotzé, South Africa

Winner: MSD Health & Medical Award

Bio: Adri's journalism career began in 1991 when she worked as a reporter at the Afrikaans newspaper, Transvaler. Three years later she moved to work as an in-depth journalist for the daily paper, Beeld, In 1998 Adri moved into television and took a position as senior producer for SABC's Special Assignment. In 2003 she moved back to newspapers and was a specialist writer for the Sunday paper Rapport. In 2005 she moved briefly to e.tv's 3rd degree, investigative current affairs programme, before setting up her own production company a2 media productions with Anna-Maria Lombard.

Anna-Maria Lombard, South Africa

Winner: MSD Health & Medical Award

Bio: Anna-Maria's career began in 1992 as a current affairs researcher at SABC Television News. She migrated to radio, working at SAfm's Live Current affairs before working as a researcher on Carte Blanche. In 2000 she joined Special Assignment as Senior Producer. She moved back to Carte Blanche in 2004 as a freelance producer before setting up her own production company, a2 media productions with Adri Kotzé in 2005. Anna-Maria was the 2002 Vodacom Journalist of the Year and the winner of the Television News Feature Award in the 2003 CNN African Journalist Awards.

Diana Lucas, South Africa

Winner: Arts & Culture Award

Bio: Diana was born in Johannesburg and initially studied and worked as a photographer for local magazines. Having worked in the drama and feature film industry she moved into television as a production manager. She has now been producing, scriptwriting and directing for the past 15 years. She owns her own production company and for the main part her work has aired on Carte Blanche, M-Net.

Esther Mbondo, Kenya

Runner-Up: Environment Award

Bio: Esther has Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Daystar University and began her career in 1998 at KTN, during her years at KTN she presented a variety of music and entertainment programming before being promoted to TV Producer. In 2005 she joined Medeva TV, an independent production company. In her role as Director she produces and presents documentary features. She is a two-time winner of the Kenya University Arts Achievement Awards for the Best Female TV Presenter.

Selma Mhaoud, Morocco

Runner-Up: Francophone TV/Radio Award

Bio: Selma started her career in journalism in 1997 at the weekly independent publication 'Le Journal'. She then joined the French monthly publication Afrique Magazine as their New York correspondent covering stories relating to the African and Muslim communities living in the United States. Since 2002 she has been reporting for 2M, a Moroccan national public station, and reporting for programmes such as 'Grand Angle', 'Polémique', 'Moubacharatan Maakoum' and Parcours d'Ailleurs'.

Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi, Zimbabwe

Winner Mohamed Amin Photographic Award

Bio: Tsvangirayi is a freelance photo journalist based in Harare. His career began in 1999 when he worked for Zimbabwe's First Daily Newspaper - The Daily News. He has worked on projects with the World Press Photo Foundation; the International Organisation for Migration and contributed all the photos for the 2007 Amnesty International Calendar Zimbabwean campaign. Tsvangirayi was the recipient of the 2002 CNN African Journalist Photographic Award; was runner-up in the Commonwealth Photographic 2004 Award and was Gender and Media Southern African Photo Journalist 2006 winner.

Stephen Mwei, Kenya

Winner: Environment Award

Bio: Stephen is a cameraman at Nation Television in Kenya. Stephen's professional career began in 1988 as a teacher. 3 years later he re-trained in camerawork and in 1994, having obtained a diploma in film/video operation technique, he joined Fast Forward Productions. The following year he moved to the Jesus Celebration Centre Production and worked as a cameraman/editor/producer and studio production trainer. He went on to work with Worldview International Foundation, an NGO dealing with Communications before joining the Nation in 1999.

Charity Mutinta Mboozi, Zambia

Winner HIV/AIDS Reporting Award

Bio: Charity has worked as a camera person and video editor at CMS Television Studios in Lusaka for the past year. Previously she worked in radio as a producer and continuity announcer at Yatsani Radio. Having joined the Women Filmmakers of Zambia, she participated in a number of their workshops, including basic filmmaking programmes in Zimbabwe and SACOD documentary production training workshop in Lusaka. She completed a diploma course in Journalism at Norma-Jean college in 2001.

Kaizer Ngwenya, South Africa

Winner: MIH Print Media Consumer Magagazine Feature Award

Bio: Kaizer is a chief reporter for DRUM magazine in South Africa. His career began in 1975 as a freelance journalist for the Weekend World Newspaper before moving to The Voice newspaper in 1977. He was an entertainment journalist at the Transvaal Post Newspaper from 1978 - 1980 and then went to cover entertainment at The Sowetan Newspaper in 1980. In 1984 he joined DRUM magazine as Entertainment Editor and was in 1992 promoted to Associate Editor a post he resigned from in 2004.

Justus Nwakanma, Nigeria

Runner-Up: Arts & Culture Award

Bio: Justus is Deputy Editor of the Daily Champion in Lagos. He joined the Champion Newspapers as Senior reporter in 2000. He has been a journalist since 1992, working initially with The Guardian and has since worked with the Lagos Eagle Newspaper, Ebony and Source Magazines and Hallmark Newspapers. He holds a B.Sc and M.Sc in Mass Communication.

Boni Odinga, Kenya

Winner: Television News Bulletin Award

Bio: Boni has worked with Kenya Television Network (KTN) since 2005 as a news and features reporter and producer. Prior to joining KTN he worked as a programmes executive at Metro FM, the commercial wing of Kenya Broadcasting Corporation. Boni holds a diploma in Mass Communication and a diploma in Radio and TV production.

Jessica Pitchford, South Africa

Runner-Up: Televisión Feature Award

Bio: Jessica has been working for the SABC since 1990, where she started out as a TV news writer and then News Reporter, and specialist journalist, covering parliament. Today she is Current Affairs producer with Special Assignment. She has won the Artes award twice, in 1994 and 1996. She has been a category winner in the 1997 and 2005 CNN African Journalist Awards. 2005 saw her also win the sport category at the Vodacom Journalist Awards and the WWB Legal Journalist of the Year. Jessica has a degree in Journalism & Media Studies.

Reginald Richardson, Botswana

Runner-Up: Television News Bulletin Award

Bio: Reginald has worked with Botswana Television since 1998. His career has been varied over the years and he has been a News Anchor in English and Setswana. A programme producer/director and has presented live events such as the opening of Parliament. In 2002 and 2006 he was the awarded News Reader of the Year by the Media Institute of Southern Africa. Reginald holds a BA in media communications and culture.

Musa Saidykhan, Gambia

Winner: Free Press Africa Award

Bio: Musa Saidykhan was editor-in-chief of The Independent newspaper in Gambia and has been a champion of free press in his country. In October 2005 he took the fight for free press in the Gambia to an international stage and was elected the Gambian representative to the pan-African organization - The African Editors' Forum. In March 2006 he was detained together with other staff members following an armed raid at the newspaper, which was subsequently closed down. Although the law states that charges must be made after 72 hours, Musa was detained for twenty two days during which time he was tortured. Upon his release he and his family were threatened and in May 2006 he was forced to leave his country. Musa Saidykhan was nominated for The Free Press Africa Award by the African Editors' Forum.

Odette Schwegler, South Africa

Winner: Television Feature Award

Bio: Odette joined SABC TV News as a Journalist in 1996. She moved from there in 1998 and joined Carte Blanche as a Senior Journalist. The following year she became a freelancer and in 2004 set up her own production company with Nicola de Chaud. With a focus on investigative journalism Odette has covered a range of topics such as elder abuse, police brutality and government corruption and her programmes are seen regularly on Carte Blanche. Odette is a graduate Cum Laude from Rhodes University.

Nicola de Chaud, South Africa

Winner: Television Feature Award

Bio: Having graduated from Rhodes University, Nicola began her career in journalism with SABC drama as a Script Editor. In 1990 she began her freelance career and has since worked on a wide range of genres such as entertainment, education, current affairs, investigative journalism and documentaries. In the last decade she has been a regular contributor to M-Net's Carte Blanche programme. In 2004 she and Odette Schwegler set up their own production company, Backyard Productions. More recently she has moved into live television, producing, directing and editing a 13 part series 'You're Hired' for SABC with business partner Schwegler.

Arão Valoi, Mozambique

Winner Portuguese Language General News Award

Bio: Having obtained degrees from both the Journalism School and the Superior institute of International Relations in Maputo, Arão started his career in journalism as a TV reporter for Miramar in 1999. In 2002 he left to join the weekly publication O País and has since worked on Savana and most recently Meianoite newspaper. Arão has completed courses in investigative journalism and financial journalism.

Muwana Wamunyima, Zambia

Runner-Up: Arts & Culture Award

Bio: Wamunyima has worked for 15 years at the Zambia News and Information Services. His career began as Assistant Information Officer and then moved to Associate Producer, Executive Producer and is now Production Manager. He holds a diploma in Development Journalism and a group Diploma in Public Relations. In the past six years, he has travelled extensively covering the Zambian Head of State's international visits.

Mandy Wiener, South Africa

Winner: Radio General News Award

Bio: Mandy graduated from Rand Afrikaans University where she earned a Bachelor of Art, majoring in Journalism and English. During her time at university, she was News Editor for RAU radio. Upon graduation, she joined Primedia Broadcasting in 2003 as a producer and a year later she started reporting for two of their radio stations, Talk Radio 702 and 94.7 Highveld Stereo. Mandy specializes in investigative reporting and Breaking News stories.

James Wokabi, Kenya

Winner: Sport Award

Bio: James is a graduate of the Kenya Institute of Mass communication. He started his career in Sport Journalism in 2002, writing for The Sports Monthly Magazine and the People Daily Newspapers. In 2004 he moved from print to radio and became a sports reporter for 98.4 Capital FM, where in 2006 he was promoted to Sports Producer. He continues to write and is a contributor to The Sunday Standard's sports pullout - Feverpitch, which he helped launch.

Alain Zongo, Burkina Faso

Winner: Francophone Print Award

Bio: Alain started his career as a history and geography teacher. He joined L'Observateur Paalga in 2000 as a correspondent and in 2006 he was promoted to senior correspondent. Alain has taken several courses covering subjects such as techniques and methodologies of investigative journalism. He was also the Editor in Chief of the local newspaper Ouahigouya Tribune from 2002 to 2005.

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