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Standard Group journalists shine at Internews Storyfest Awards

By - Rawlings Otieno | Sep 30th 2013 | 2 min read
Antony Gitonga, Kiundu Waweru, Kassim Muhamed and John Allan Namu after a gala dinner at the Kenya Medical Research Institute headquarters in Nairobi on Friday.  [PHOTO: RAWLINGS OTIENO/STANDARD]

By Rawlings Otieno

KENYA: Standard Group journalists were feted during the third Internews Storyfest Awards in Nairobi.

Storyfest celebrates creative, compelling and unique stories on health matters. The annual awards are divided into different categories to which the group’s television, print and online journalists were nominated.

Kiundu Waweru, a feature writer, won in the print category, with Anthony Gitonga emerging runner up, online category. KTN’s Kassim Muhamed and John Allan Namu were the second runners up in the Best Long Form Documentary for their story Branches of the Baobab. Saida Swaleh also of KTN was a runner up for Best TV Story with Kibirikizi cha Uzazi.

The Standard writer, Waweru won with his story, Slaves of the Beading Culture, about the Samburu girls who are beaded by their male relatives as a form of engagement. The men are allowed to sleep with a girl, as young as eight, but if she falls pregnant, the baby is an outcast. The men can also not marry the impregnated girls and sometimes they are forced to abort.

Other feted journalists included Saum Athman of Pilipili FM for Best Radio Story and Marie Yambo of KBC for Best TV Story. K24’s Kevin Mureithi with After Loliondo won the Best Long Form Story.

Speaking during the event at the Kenya Medical Research Institute headquarters on Friday, Health Media Program director at Internews Sandra Ndonye commended this year’s entries and assured journalists that Internews would continue nurturing and training them to ensure they play their watchdog role more effectively.

Chief guest Otula Owuor who is also a chief editor at Science Africa, challenged journalists to work even harder especially on the untold stories from the counties.

Untold stories

“I want to thank Internews for their continued support to health journalism that continues to highlight important health issues in our society,” he said. James Mbugua who was one of this year’s judges commended the quality and high number of entries in various categories.

“We were looking for pieces that make an impact in our society in an entertaining and informative way,” said Mbugua.

He said good stories on health journalism touching on such issues like HIV and Aids, family planning and maternal health needed to be told.

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