The 2021 awards of the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists (IFEJ) is focused on the impact of COVID-19 on businesses. The annual event, dubbed the ‘IFEJ Flamingo Awards,’ is meant to recognise hardworking financial journalists who go the extra mile in promoting financial journalism in the country.
The seventh edition of the awards slated for January 2022, is on the theme: “Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Business Resilience and Recovery in the Ghanaian economy.”
Award categories include best finance news story/feature, best business/manufacturing story, best development feature, best tourism, best business of health, best natural resources, best ICT and best local economy feature/ news story.
The overall winner will be given an opportunity to attend a fully sponsored World Bank Spring Meeting in Washington and receive a plaque, citation and packages from sponsors.
At the launch of awards, the President of IFEJ, Mr Rayborn Bulley, in his welcome address, said that IFEJ would continue to engage in, and support capacity building of journalists in various areas.
He urged journalists to continue to undertake rigorous cross-checking of facts before publishing their works.
A member of the jury, Rev. Dr Felix Klutse, corroborated the view that the IFEJ Flamingo Awards was instituted to encourage journalists to employ analysis in their reportage.
He explained that journalists were entitled to submit a maximum of three entries; one per category, stressing that failure to do so could lead to disqualification.
“Submitted pieces are expected to be a feature/news story not more than 1,300 words or 20 minutes of airtime delivered on any media platform (print, broadcast, online). Journalists are encouraged to start making entries from August 26 to September 30th, 2021,” he said.
In a speech read on behalf of the guest of honour, who is the CEO of COA Research and Manufacturing Company Ltd, Prof. Samuel Ato Duncan, by Dr Richard Nsia Agyeman, he said business resilience was the ability of organisations to quickly adapt to disruptions while maintaining ongoing business operations and protecting people, assets and overall brand assets.
He said that business resilience offered post-disruption strategies to avoid costly downtime and also to maintain business operations in the face of unexpected breaks.
“The onset of the corona virus disease has brought to bear the importance of business resilience planning, especially, in recent times. Companies that made provisions for unexpected events have to a high extent been able to survive in the pandemic era,” he observed.
He said most companies had to re-strategise the entire processes of the operations of work in order to survive or ensure continuity of their firms.
“Other organisations had to lay down workers, cut down on salaries and work from home to contain the economic down- turn associated with the pandemic. Some have also taken advantage of the pandemic to promote their businesses online and this has caused tremendous growth for the company,” he said.
He urged Ghanaians to continue to adhere to the safety protocols to reduce the viral infection in order to protect the economy.
The chairperson for the occasion, who is the Executive Director of the Ghana-UK Chamber of Commerce, Ms Adjoba Kyiamah, commended IFEJ for enriching the media landscape in the country and gave an assurance that she would rally support from members of the Chamber for the awards.
IFEJ, since its inception, has helped build the capacity of journalists to specialise in business, financial, economic and extractive industry reporting.
It instituted the Flamingo Awards to recognise writers and also raise awareness of the need for reliable, objective, analytical and comprehensive reporting.