The 41 finalists for the sixth annual Mondi Shanduka Newspaper Awards for exceptional newspaper journalism during 2006 were released earlier this week. Organised by Mondi Shanduka Newsprint and the Newspaper Association of South Africa, the theme for the competition, which had 193 entrants, was ‘Weapons of Mass Discussion’.
The winners will be acknowledged by the industry and their peers on Wednesday, 25 April 2007, at the Hilton in Sandton, Johannesburg. Each category winner will receive a R10 000 personal cash prize, a Mondi Shanduka Golden Nib trophy and a framed certificate.
Soldiers of journalism
The Mondi Shanduka Newspaper Awards seek to honour journalists who have fought for excellence in their crafts of hard news, analysis and commentary, feature writing, investigative, graphical and creative journalism. The ceremony will honour the ‘soldiers’ who brought us the trials and tribulations of SA during 2006 through breaking news and in-depth features, challenging commentary, fascinating photographs, creative graphics and inventive layouts and spreads.
The judging panel comprised convenor Guy Berger, head of media studies and journalism at Rhodes University; John Dludlu, former editor of the Sowetan; Ebbe Dommisse, former editor of Die Burger; Ivan Fynn, former editor of theCape Argus; Alf Kumalo, veteran award-winning photojournalist; Ruda Landman, television journalist and co-anchor of Carte Blanche; Irwin Manoim, founding editor of the Mail and Guardian; Phil Mtimkulu, founding editor of The Voice; and Sophie Tema, award-winning journalist.
Journalists were invited to enter nine categories, including hard news; analysis and commentary; feature writing, investigative journalism, creative journalism, graphical journalism, news photographs, feature photographs and presentation (layout and design). From the entries, the judging panel selects the South African Story of the Year and the Mondi Shanduka Journalist of the Year winners.
A total of 457 entries were received, reflecting a decrease on the previous year’s tally of 603 entries, even though the number of entrants increased from 186 to 193.
“This year we required entrants to enter only their top three items – rather than blast the judges with a blunderbuss of hits and misses,” explains Berger.
“The result was a higher quality of entries overall, and therefore more time for judges to focus on top content rather than on weeding out weak entries.”
The finalists across of the categories, in no particular order, are:
- Adriaan Basson & Carien du Plessis – Beeld for “Vrae oor SA tronkbaas”
- Alon Skuy – The Star for a portfolio on the “Zuma Trials”
- Andie Miller – Sunday Independent for “Berea Gogo”
- Braam Kruger – Rapport for “etensTYD”
- Bruce Cameron – Personal Finance for a series on the “Alexander Forbes plundered pension funds”
- Chris Collingridge – The Star for “Help Me!”
- Enos Mhlongo – Isolezwe for “Isiphihli bekhandwa ngamatshe abalsolwa ngokudlwengula”
- Esa Alexander – Die Burger for “Begrawe verlede” – the PW Botha Funeral - Thabo Mbeki story
- Gabriel Seeber – Saturday Star for “The battle for the HILL”
- Hanlie Retief – Rapport for “Maar wat van ‘n bietjie Liefde”
- Kevin Bloom – Sunday Times for “Mabrr is still in the house”
- Marzanne van den Bergh and Waldimar Pelser – Beeld for “Onskuldig of Skuldig”
- Neil McCartney – Citizen for a portfolio especially “Fallen Heroes”
- Renée Bonorchis – Business Day for “Absent Mittal chiefs do it by phone – if at all”; “BEE buzz hides how things stay the same” and “Accidental plus for investors”
- Renthia Bornman – Rapport for “Lark”
- Rob Rose – Business Day for a series on the Kebble story titled “Kebble’s R2bn dodgy share deals exposed” and the “Mzi Khumalo in new BEE share-sale controversy” story
- Sam Sole, Nic Dawes, Zukile Majova & Stefaans Br?mmer – Mail & Guardian for a series on “The Kebble – Selebi link”
- Simpiwe Piliso, Jessica Bezuidenhout & Jocelyn Maker – Sunday Times for “Selebi named…” & “Selebi and the cop mafia”
- Steve Lawrence – The Star for a portfolio on the ““Zuma sex grilling”
- Sithembiso Msomi – City Press for “The amazing vanishing acts of Muzi Kunene”
- TJ Lemon – Sunday Independent for “Village of Dance”
- Wally Mbhele & Moipone Malefane - Sunday Times for “A house divided cripples ANC”
- Zapiro – Sunday Times for “Eskom: Loose bolt tightened” and “Jacob Zuma’s 101 uses for condoms”
Comments Berger: “In a very competitive field this year, the judges decided to issue a record number of commendations. The signal we are sending these journalists is that your work has been recognised and appreciated. Keep it up and be sure to enter next year.”
The judging panel has commended the following journalists:
- Erika Gibson – Beeld for “Peperduur pretvlug”
- Graeme Hosken – Pretoria News for “Body Parts found in walls”
- Jana Engelbrecht – Diamond Fields Advertiser for “Irresponsible”
- Jeremy Gordin & Karyn Maughan – The Star for “Zuma’s Love Child”
Analysis and conmmentary
- Jeremy Gordin – Sunday Independent for “Thread of Schabir’s Lore wears thin”
- Nashira Davids – Sunday Times for “Kicking out against the Ghetto”
- Borrie le Grange – Beeld for “Zuma herinneringe”
- Carlos Amato – Sunday Times for “Return of the Renegade”
- Elsabé Brits – Die Burger for “Waarheen het jou ouma geloop?”
- Fred Kockott & Sibusiso Ngalwa – Sunday Tribune for “Ndebele: The horns of a dilemma”
- Simpiwe Piliso – Sunday Times for “Telkom uproar”
- Fred Khumalo – Sunday Times for “How many Zulus does it take to change a lightbulb”
- Jaco Jacobs – Rapport for “Stille Nag”
- Khadija Margardie-Bradlow – Freelancer for “Government Gimmick”
- Maureen Isaacson – Sunday Independent for “How to be raped in the dark ages of male entitlement”
- Niren Tolsi – Mail & Guardian for “Still mixing”
- Anton Vermeulen – Beeld for “Hoe sê ‘n mens Dankie?” (Yin yang)
- Brenton Geach – Cape Times for “Strinking Satawu members accused of setting train ablaze”
- Simphiwe Mbokazi – Beeld for “Maak oop en sê aaa”
- Muntu Vilakazi – Sunday Times for a portfolio on the “Congo elections”
- Nonhlanhla Kambule-Makgati – The Star for a portfolio on “Kgetleng local Municipality”
- Sydney Seshibedi – Saturday Star for a portfolio on “Homeless workers”
Due to unforeseen circumstances, Sarah Crowe, former TV news editor, Caroline Southey, former editor of Financial Mail and Kaizer Nyatsumba, former editor of The Daily News were unable to attend the judging sessions.