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Anambra Social Media Award Suffers Set Back As Nominee Pulls Out

Says the award is more of a business venture By Eneh Victor Chigozie

The Anambra Social Media Award, being organised by Comr Chuma, the originator of ‘Ofe Ogbono Politics’ has suffered a credibility test, as one of the award nominees, Mr Abuchi Onwumelu, a reporter with Fides Newspaper Awka pulls out of the contest.

In a press release few minutes ago, Mr Onwumelu accused the organisers of not having professional modalities to determine the winners.

He said the award is more like a business venture than a professional contest.

Here is his press statement:

Why I pulled out from Anambra Media Excellence Award 2019

Esteemed teammates, this is to inform you all that I have officially pulled out from the Media Excellence award contest. As you all know I was one of the nominees for the Best Current Affairs Reporter of the year Category. If you observed, you will notice that ever since I announced my entry into the race, I didn’t say anything again concerning the event. You will also notice that why other nominees were busy canvassing and soliciting for votes, I kept quiet. I didn’t ask anyone to vote for me. Reason is not farfetched. I waited to see if the organizers will spell out modalities for the contest because I know too well that best reporter/best behaved social media influencer are never decided by mere votes. Under what criteria are the organizers going to base their gradings? Since when did professional ratings become a thing to be determined by voice vote? How will the winner defend the title, without his/her work (proof that he is really the champs)? It appears more like a business venture than a professional contest. I argued that there must be modality for choosing the best reporter or best behaved social media influencer. It is never done by mere voting. I faulted the modality applied by the organizers. It will encourage mediocrity and will also deny genuine and qualified individuals the opportunity to emerge as winners. The contest will never produce genuine winners. Nominees should have been made to go through the normal process which is the submission of their entries to a credible panel who will then go through such entries based on set out criteria before announcing the various winners.

But in this case, members are merely being asked to vote as though we were in a Big Brother show. It means that the winners may not necessarily be the best but who lobbied more even though deep down them they know they are not the best. A reporter/ best behaved social media influencer who writes terrible stories or write-ups on Social media can emerge the winner as the best reporter/ best behaved social media influencer. And when called out to react to his victory before the cameras, he will shock the world with his horrible command of the English Language and lack of proper understanding of communication and media practice. For the contest to be credible, free and fair, it must be supervised by credible panels of core professionals. I repeat that the determination of best reporter (s) should go through the proper process. This is not a reality show where votes decide winners. Dear friends, colleagues, fans, well-wishers, thank you for nominating and casting your vote for me in the first instance. I appreciate your love. Please, do not bother mobilizing for me because even If I emerged I will not accept the award. I can only accept it when due process is strictly followed. I’m not desperate for award and recognition. I know my worth and ratings in media practice all over Nigeria and beyond. I wouldn’t want to be honoured because I went to town to canvassing for votes. I rather wait for those who appreciate excellence honour and recognize me. Let our works and contributions towards nation building fish us out.

Thanks and God bless.

Signed:

Abuchi Onwumelu (Fides Newspaper)

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