Kenya’s Neville Otuki is crowned at Sanlam Financial Journalist of the Year Awards

Sanlam Kenya Group CEO Mr. Patrick Tumbo with Journalist Neville Otuki

Neville Otuki was feted the African Growth Story Second runner up prize to emerge as the only East African representative on the winners’ podium.

A local online energy news portal has picked a continental Financial Journalism award in the Sanlam Awards for Excellence in Financial Journalism 2018 competition.

In the hotly contested awards initiative, Kenya Energy News which publishes The Energy Siren news website that covers Kenya energy events, technologies, investments, projects, partnerships and related stories, through its Writer Mr Neville Otuki, bagged the African Growth Story Second runner up prize to emerge as the only East African representative on the winners’ podium.

A prolific Business Reporter, Otuki has served at The Standard Group and the Nation Media Group.

Previous winners of the African Growth story category include Dominic Omondi of The Standard newspaper in Kenya (2017), Ancillar Mangena of CNBC Africa in South Africa (2016), and Allan Odhiambo of the Business Daily in Kenya (2015).

Speaking in Nairobi, Sanlam Kenya Group CEO Patrick Tumbo, said South Africa’s Financial Mail editor, Mr Rob Rose won the Sanlam Financial Journalist of the Year overall award. Rose has previously won the Sanlam Financial Journalist of the Year award twice and various category awards in the Sanlam Awards for Excellence in Financial Journalism competition over the years.

Launched in 2013, the African Growth Story category in the Sanlam Awards for Excellence in Financial Journalism competition is open to all journalists who practise in Africa and whose work is published and/or broadcast on the continent. The category recognises stories covering the significance of business and investment on the continent. Entries should focus on the growth of the continent in terms of investments, infrastructure development, economic progress and related topics.

Commenting on the 2018 entries, interim convenor of the judges’ panel, Mr. Charles Naude, said: “In general, the quality of the submissions was very high. In some categories, the competition was so fierce leading to intense debates. Once again the entries showed the mettle and value of determined investigative journalists to expose power abuse and mismanagement in the public and private sectors.”

Naude further commented: “What was quite positive was how the African Growth Story category has been a successful growth story itself. The interest in this category has been growing over the years and this year it attracted the highest number of entries of high quality.”

Speaking at the awards presentation ceremony in Johannesburg South Africa, Sanlam Group CEO, Mr Ian Kirk said, “The media is working in a space where digital has changed the business model significantly and journalists have to work and deliver on multiple platforms. In this context, what journalists have been able to achieve proves their mettle in exposing systems that facilitate wrongdoing in civil society. This is very good for the public discourse. The exemplary ethos and quality of financial journalism is critical and has never been more important than it was in the last couple of years.”

Sanlam Chief Executive of Brand, Sydney Mbhele, said: “This is the 44th year that Sanlam is hosting the awards. Our commitment financial journalism is long standing and reflects our desire to contribute constructively to the profession. We are committed to these awards because we believe good journalism is vital to an informed society and encouraging good governance in business, and even across civil society.”

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