Radio Nigeria Correspondent, Alfred Ajayi has won the 2022 Professor Chinyere Stella Okunna Ethical Journalism Award for journalists plying their trade in Anambra State.
Alfred’s report captioned “How Anambra run over 630 PHCs with 150 nurses, midwives” was adjudged the most outstanding of the thirteen entries received by the award committee.
The presentation formed the highpoint of the end of the year party of NUJ, Anambra State Council.
Out of thirteen entries submitted by practicing journalists in the state, three of them were shortlisted for the final selection of winner. Out of the three finalists, two of them (Uche Ndeke and Alfred Ajayi) are Radio Nigeria correspondents.
Eventually, Alfred Ajayi was announced the winner of the award, initiated two years ago by a world-renowned professor of Mass Communication, Chinyere Stella Okunna, to encourage ethical practices among media professionals in the area.
On the occasion, the benefactor, Professor Stella Okunna, described ethics as everything a journalist needs to succeed in the profession and appealed to members of the council to continue to uphold in the discharge of their professional duties.
In his remark, the winner, Alfred Ajayi, described the award as a dream come through. “It’s long journey to this place. It teaches me really that there is time for everything. I have worked hard for a time like this. I thank God that today is my turn”.
“I particularly value this because it is from my own very constituency, the NUJ. It is a fulfillment of career dream,” he concluded.
The chairman of the occasion and former Resident Electoral Commissioner in charge of Imo State, Prof. Emeka Ezeonu, urged Nigerians to take active part in the 2023 general election, assuring the citizens that the 2022 Electoral Act has made it impossible for politicians to twist the wishes of the electorate.
“Get your PVCs and come out enmass to cast your votes. I assure you, nobody can rig the elections. The BVAS is a guarantee for credibility likewise the electronic transfer of results from polling units to the INEC portal”
“As journalists, you owe the society education, sensitization and mobilization. You are critical to our survival as a people,” Prof. Ezeonu remarked.
In a keynote address, the Commissioner for Education in Anambra State, Prof. Ngozi Chuma-Udeh, enjoined journalists to keep to the tenets of journalism and not to practice the profession at the expense of Nigeria.
“As you disseminate information, be always on the path of truth,” she advised.
Earlier in an address of welcome, the NUJ Chairman, Dr Emeka Odogwu, enjoined members of the fourth estate of the realm to remain the conscience and moral parameter of the society.
Be careful with friendship. As journalists, you must know where to draw the line on friendship because it must not undermine the performance of your duty”.