Popular Nigerian investigative journalist, Fisayo Soyombo, has bagged the 2020 Fetisov Journalism Awards (FJA) for outstanding investigative reporting. Fisayo’s undercover investigation about the Nigerian justice system saw him emerge as one of the top 12 winning entries which were announced on Wednesday, February 10, 2021.
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The Nigerian’s work made the cut and placed second in the investigative reporting category, out of a total of 283 entries entered from across 77 countries in four award categories.
Fisayo’s research which exposed the rot in the Nigerian justice system was carried out with him spending two weeks in police detention (five days in a cell and eight days as an inmate in the popular Ikoyi Prison), from when he was arrested by the Nigerian police until he was released.
Posing with a fictitious name, Ojo Olajumoke, Fisayo feigned an offence which led to his arrest and eventual detention in police custody for his investigation. He was arraigned in court before being remanded in prison.
Another Nigerian that made the top 12 is Philip Obaji of Sahara Reporters. Obaji’s work on ‘The Child Refugees Sold Through Facebook’ claimed the third prize in the category for outstanding contribution to peace. From a shortlist of 35 works, FJA picked their winners.
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‘The competitive entries were assessed against a set of criteria such as accuracy of the information, independence, impartiality and fairness, humanity, transparency, promotion of ethical principles, positive impact on the political, economic or social situation in a particular area, country or globally.’
Fisayo who set up the Foundation for Investigative Journalism (FIJ), is notable for being vocal against issues relating to corruption and other ills confronting the society. Aside from winning the Kurt Schork Awards in International Journalism (2012), he won the People Journalism Prize for Africa 2019 and finished as runner-up for the One World Media (OWM) organized International Journalist of the Year award in 2019.
Some other awards he has bagged include the Newcomer of the Year (2016 Free Press Awards), Investigative Journalist of the Year (Wole Soyinka Awards for Investigative Reporting), and Zimeo Excellence in Journalism Awards.
The Cable NG
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