The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Sunday conferred the “Investigative Reporter of The Year” Award on THE WHISTLER journalist Nnaemeka Wondrous who currently serves as the organisation’s Head, Law and Judiciary Desk.
The Commission’s Chairman, Award Committee, Barrister Dahiru Sajo Bobbo stated that the award was aimed at motivating journalists “who are also Human Rights Defenders to go the extra mile in expanding the frontiers of freedom of expression, thereby contributing their
quota towards widening the civic space.”
Explaining how the awardee met the Commission’s criteria for the investigative category being the only online organisation to be nominated, the NHRC told participants at its Dinner and Award night event in Maitama Abuja that the reporter projected the independent nature of the Commission in its bid to promote and protect human rights during the year.
“He is a journalist who pays serious attention to every detail. Little wonder he
enjoys going full-length to capture all angles to any human rights stories. He
deploys his investigative journalism skills to ask questions that enable him
uniquely balance his stories.
“Nnaemeka will not let go any of the elements of the 5Ws and H in his news report even if it means filing his story the last. His headlines are very unique and they speak to the independence nature of the Commission,” the board said while reading his citation to the audience on Sunday.
In his speech, the Executive Secretary of the NHRC, Tony Ojukwu, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, observed that the event coincided with the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), a unique document which proclaimed dignity, equality and justice as common standards for all people and all nations.
He acknowledged the sterling works of human rights defenders, civil society organisations, labour unions, women organisations, Nigerian youths and students, in pursuit of a world of human rights anchored on justice, equity and human solidarity.
Ojukwu urged governments at national, state and local levels in Nigeria to reflect on the tripartite obligations to respect, protect and fulfil human rights and ensure that these are reflected in budgetary, policy, legislative and programmatic activities of government.
“Governments should use the significance of the UDHR to implement to the letter, the Fundamental Objectives and Directive Principles of State Policy enshrined in Chapter 2 of the Constitution, by placing the security and welfare of Nigerians above personal, partisan, ethnic and religious interests and considerations,” Ojukwu said.
The ES maintained that only through the human right-based approaches that Nigeria can solve its socio-economic problems of poverty, inequalities, unemployment and insecurity.
“Our current economic and policy reforms should reflect a sense of government understanding its obligation to fulfil the human rights of every Nigerian,” he added while congratulating the awardees who comprised of three journalists and some members of staff of the Commission.
Chair, NHRC Governing Council, Dr. Salamatu Suleiman, extended appreciation to the ES and the staff of the Commission for implementing the goals and objectives of the agency in 2023, for the betterment of Nigeria.
“I want to particularly put on record my sincere appreciation to the council which I lead, to the Executive Secretary and his team and the entire members of the NHRC for the excellent arrangement, excellent work that has been done,” she said.
Ameh Ochojila, an Assistant News Editor at Guardian Newspaper won the NHRC “Story Transformation Excellence Award” while Rafiat Sadiq Mohammed, a Judiciary Correspondent and Human Rights Reporter for DAAR Communications Plc
won the NHRC “Resilience and Consistency Award”
The event was attended by government officials, representatives of the Nigerian Bar Association, Civil Society Organisation, newsmen, and staff members of the Commission.
THE WHISTLER Journalist Bags NHRC 2023 Investigative Reporter Award is first published on The Whistler Newspaper