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TheCable editor, ‘Fisayo Soyombo, wins Wole Soyinka Investigative Reporting Award

TheCable editor, ‘Fisayo Soyombo, wins Wole Soyinka Investigative Reporting Award
December 13
12:21 2014

‘Fisayo Soyombo, editor of TheCable, has won the online category of the 2014 Wole Soyinka Award for Investigative Reporting.

Ibanga Isine of Premium Times placed second in the category.

For 11 days between December 10 and December 20, 2013, Soyombo scoured the perilous villages of north-central Plateau state to investigate the series of communal killings that claimed more than 1,000 people in 2012 and 2013 alone.

Published in December 2013 as a five-part series, his story, Blood on the Plateau, detailed the venom with which the killings were orchestrated. It also proffered solutions to ending the violence.

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In July 2014, Blood on the Plateau was shortlisted for the Local Reporter category of the 2014 Kurt Schork Awards in International Journalism, which featured “almost 300 stories entered by  93 journalists from 41 countries”.

But the award was won by Indian journalist Neha Dixit for her story on the rapidly rising incidence of rape in India and its impact on the society.

Receiving the Wole Soyinka award at the NECA building, Alausa, Lagos on Tuesday evening, Soyombo said: “I have always thought one of the things that make life unfair is that one man takes the glory for work done by many.

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“I do not exactly see myself as winner of this award. I am only the custodian, so I’d be keeping it for the real winners: people like Temi Bamgbose and John Awe, who didn’t enjoy Christmas and Boxing Day 2013 because of this story; people like Kola Tubosun and Pelu Awofeso who supplied me many valuable contacts; people like Samsom Zwalnan, my immensely-courageous Plateau guide; like my former boss, Mr. Calixthus Okoruwa, who allowed me travel to Plateau at a time when ‘no’ was the easier option; and everyone at TheCable, without whom I wouldn’t be here”

He “specially” thanked his mentor, Jahman Anikulapo, former editor of TheGuardian on Sunday, saying: “Jahman has had the biggest influence on my journalism career, and I’d be an ingrate to pick up any award without screaming his name.”

He dedicated the award to “everyone who has had cause to shed a tear for the killings in the villages of Plateau”.

“Those are the real people who should be celebrated – not me,” he added.

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Soyombo joined TheCable in April 2014 as News and Features Editor. He was appointed Editor in August 2014.

He occasionally shares his thoughts on national issues on Aljazeera.

Also at the event, Ademola Osinubi, managing director of Punch, won the Lifetime Achievement Award; while the Anti-Corruption Defender Award went to the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP).

Eric Dume of Punch won the Local Government Category, Tobore Ovuorie of Premium Times won the Report Women Category, while Olatunji Ololade and Olukunle Akinrinade of TheNation won the Health Category.

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Femi Adedeji (National Mirror) won the Editorial Cartoon Category, Kunle Ajayi (Daily Independent) won Photo Category, and Kelechi Emekalam (TVC) won the Broadcast Television Category, which came with the N500, 000 Vin-Martin Ilo Grant.

Juliana Francis (New Telegraph), who won the Print Category, was named Investigative Reporter of the Year.

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1 Comment

  1. sunza
    sunza December 15, 05:57

    Congrats TheCable! More accolades to come for your good work…

    Reply to this comment

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