AfDB sets to create media award to encourage fair, balanced reporting

By Guardian Reporter , The Guardian
Published at 08:00 AM May 16 2024
AfDB President, Dr Akinwumi Adesina (standing) speaks to media leaders on the banks’ intention to establish an annual Africa media prize.
Photo: Courtesy of AfDB
AfDB President, Dr Akinwumi Adesina (standing) speaks to media leaders on the banks’ intention to establish an annual Africa media prize.

AFRICAN Development Bank Group (AfDB), has announced the creation of an Annual Africa Media Prize to recognise and profile African journalists, correspondents and media houses that showcase Africa’s achievements and progress.

A statement from AfDB and shared to this journalist, quoted the bank’s president Dr Akinwumi Adesina, saying AfDB would work with the AllAfrica Media organisation and African financial institutions to establish the prize.

According to him, the prize would serve as part of efforts to promote more positive reporting of developments on the continent. 

He was delivering a keynote speech yesterday during a media leaders’ summit convened by AllAfrica Media in Nairobi Kenya.

The summit on the theme of “Re-engineering African Media in Times of Critical Transformation” brought over 300 African media owners and operators, government officials, corporate leaders, academics, civil society champions, and development partners to discuss the business of media and the critical role it must play in shaping Africa’s future.

 “Africa must shape its own narrative, and not depend on what others think about it or the perspectives they prefer to share about it, its achievements, and opportunities… Positive stories of African investment opportunities need to be well showcased, as they unfortunately do not get sufficient coverage, if any at all, in western media,” Dr Adesina declared in the statement.

He also proposed that the AfDB, Africa Import-Export Bank, and all regional financial institutions pool resources to support the emergence of a globally respected African media company that will position the news of Africa to the world.

 “The media has a critically important role, by being fair, objective, inquisitive, investigative yes, but also by being a catalyst for development, and promoting positive news about tangible African accomplishments, achievements, and developments,” he said in his address.

Dr Adesina also called on development institutions in Africa to set up a joint repository of verified and standardised stories, videos and content that will make it easier to aggregate and write stories on what is being achieved in Africa.

He also pledged that the AfDB, working with partners and the African financial institutions would also help establish the African Journalists’ and Correspondents’ Fellowships to help build and strengthen the capacities of journalists and correspondents working in Africa.

“Together let us continue to promote Africa. I call on you as leaders of the media, become the vuvuzelas for Africa! Tell Africa’s positive stories,” he urged his audience of media executives from across the continent.

 The AfDB is Africa’s premier development finance institution. It comprises three distinct entities which includes, the African Development Bank (AfDB), the African Development Fund (ADF) and the Nigeria Trust Fund (NTF).

On the ground in 34 African countries with an external office in Japan, the AfDB contributes to the economic development and the social progress of its 54 regional member states.