Today - 18th May 2012, the Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA) and Sanlam joined forces again to celebrate excellence in the local media industry of South Africa. The MDDA/Sanlam Local Media Awards 2012 included the inaugural Rantho/Letsebe Community Media Achievement Award and was presented at a gala dinner at the Coastlands Umhlanga Hotel in Durban, in the KwaZulu-Natal province.
The Awards Gala Dinner was attended by the Deputy Minister in the Presidency, Hon. Obed Bapela, Chairperson of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Communications, Skhumbuzo Eric Kholwane, captains of the industry and over 300 editors, journalists, photographers and broadcasters from all provinces.
The MDDA/Sanlam Local Media Awards bring together the (more than 22 years of Sanlam Community Newspaper Awards and four years of SABC News/MDDA Community Media Awards)
into one big event - the MDDA/Sanlam Local Media Awards in the best interest of developing grassroots/local media talent, celebrating and promoting excellence. The Awards are based on the acknowledgement of the different types of local media operating at grassroots: Community Media
- in terms of the MDDA
Act means any media project that is owned and controlled by a community where any financial surplus generated is reinvested in the media project; and
"community" means a geographically founded community or any group of persons or sector of the public having a specific ascertainable common interest; Small Commercial Media (SMME)
- in terms of the MDDA Act
means independent media enterprises or initiatives that are run for personal gain as micro, very small or small businesses as classified in the National Small Business Act, 1996 (Act No. 102 of 1996).
AndCorporate owned local newspapers and magazines
- which is locally distributed media by corporate media owners like Caxton, Media 24, Independent Newspapers, etc.
This partnership between the MDDA, Sanlam and industry associations is a milestone in the pursuit of developing and promoting media diversity, and the celebration of excellence in the local media sector.
The inaugural Rantho/Letsebe Community Media Achievement Award is dedicated to the many community media activists, heroes and heroines who have passed away and is given in the name of the late Tshepo Rantho and the late Harry Letsebe. It is given to the best community media project in South Africa that ensures the noble principles of community ownership and control, community participation, relevant community content in the languages spoken in the community served.
This year, some 509 community and small commercial newspapers, corporate owned local newspapers and community radio stations
from across the country as well as one from Namibia participated. No fewer than 921 individual entries in the typography, writing, photography and 79 entries for the radio categories (Best Community Radio Station, Broadcasting in Indigenous Languages, In-depth News Coverage and Current Affairs, and in Investigative Journalism)
were judged. More than 213 photographs and over 79 radio programmes were also assessed individually. This makes the competition the largest of the many community/grassroots competitions held in South Africa annually.
The Special Rantho/Letsebe Community Media Achievement Award winner is -
The MDDA/Sanlam Local Media Awards 2012 winners are: Grassroots/community media (only writing & photography results) Corporate owned Local and Independent Publishers
The total value of prizes won is R200 000 awarded to 40 winners, across all categories. The MDDA and Sanlam would like to thank the partners, the industry associations and category sponsors which include Sentech, Wits Journalism, Absa, The Media Connection, Mediashop and M&G Media (as a media partner). Many thanks go to the selfless Judges who spent their time adjudicating over this competition. Congratulations to all the entrants, runners up, finalists and winners.