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‘This promotion is long overdue’ — Motunrayo Alaka appointed CEO of Wole Soyinka Centre

The board of Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Journalism (WSCIJ) has announced the appointment of Motunrayo Alaka as executive director/chief executive officer of the organisation.

The decision was confirmed after a board meeting held on September 19, 2019, with effect from the inception of the “current project year”.

In a statement signed by Ropo Sekoni, the WSCIJ board chairman, the board noted that this promotion was long overdue and highlighted by Motunrayo Alaka’s long service plus her unalloyed loyalty during the organisation’s long thick-and-thin growing period.

The board also noted her efforts as being central to the organisation’s many successes as a reference point in the promotion of journalism and the media for the enrichment and consolidation of democracy in Nigeria and beyond.

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Prior to her appointment, Alaka, fondly known among journalists as “The Encourager” has been serving as the pioneer Centre Coordinator since December 2008.

In this role, she provided strategic leadership for WSCIJ’s programmes and managed relationships with the organisation’s stakeholders.

During this time, she grew the organisation from its initial two programmes – the annual award and lecture, to more than 10.

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She was the pioneer programme manager of the Wole Soyinka Investigative Reporting Award from 2005 to 2006, having been a key member of the team that commenced the initiative in 2005.

Alaka has over 14 years’ experience in journalism, media strategy and programme development and is passionate about issues of collaboration, ethics, inclusion and sustainability especially as they relate with the media and governance.

She has enabled the training of more than 1050 reporters across 100 media organisations and led the implementation of over 210 reports that have been published across the Nigerian media on issues including health, girls and women, education, the extractives (oil and gas), politics, governance and electricity.

Among other endeavours, Alaka has served on award boards for the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) International Media and Information Literacy Award Committee and the British Broadcasting Corp. Service Trust.

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Motunrayo Alaka is currently a fellow of the 2019-20 class of the prestigious John S. Knight Journalism Fellowships at Stanford University in California, United States.

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