Amina Yuguda, a journalist from North-Eastern Nigeria has been crowned the winner of the third BBC World News Komla Dumor Award.
Ms Yuguda is a news presenter on local network Gotel Television, where she has reported on high-profile news stories, including the Boko Haram insurgency.
Amina Yuguda will start a three-month placement at the BBC in London in September. After spending time there, she will also get to travel to Africa to report a story – and have that story shared across the continent and the world.
Describing her win was a “huge honour,” Ms Yuguda said: “I was overwhelmed with joy. Storytellers have always had an important role in Africa… this is what defines us. Today journalists are taking on that responsibility.”
After applications for the award were announced in February 2017, Amina Yuguda impressed the BBC panel with her story-telling and her ability to convey complex ideas in a way that resonates with a wide audience.
In her application, Ms Yuguda said she is excited to work at the BBC, given her understanding of the corporation’s impact on pastoralists in her hometown. She said:
“With little or no formal education, my countrymen can hold their own in a variety of topics, including the Trump presidency in America, North Korea’s defiance, Russia’s foreign relations under Putin, and more.”
Describing Ms Yuguda as a worthy winner, the BBC World Service Group Director Francesca Unsworth said:
“To find someone who possesses many of Komla’s qualities is something for us to celebrate, and we are very excited about working with Amina.”
The award which aims to celebrate African journalism and reward exceptional talent was created to honour Ghanaian-British BBC World News presenter Komla Dumor, who died suddenly aged 41 in 2014.
The BBC’s World Service described Komla as a much-loved and respected journalist – not only with his colleagues but also with aspiring journalists and audiences across the world.
His storytelling was compelling and his enthusiasm was infectious, making him one of Africa’s leading journalists. Through his tenacious journalism and compelling storytelling, Komla worked tirelessly to bring a more nuanced African narrative to the world.
Through the Komla Dumor Award, the BBC says it is committed to continuing Komla’s legacy dedication to the African continent. The award rewards rising stars who display exceptional talent, someone who embodies the excellent spirit of Komla.
Previous winners of the Komla Dumor Award are Ugandan news anchor Nancy Kacungira and Nigerian business journalist Didi Akinyelure.
Didi Akinyelure, the 2016 winner of the BBC award started out as an investment banker. She is an Anchor/Producer at CNBC Africa, based in the Lagos bureau and the face of Open Exchange West Africa.
During her placement, Ms Akinyelure went to the Ivory Coast to investigate new opportunities for the local chocolate manufacturing industry. Speaking of her experience at the BBC, Akinyelure said:
“It has been completely life-changing for me. You get intensive training in journalism – everything from presenting, to editing, to writing, telling the story, to understanding BBC ethics.
“Whatever it is that you have may be what the BBC is looking for. So you need to take this opportunity and seriously, apply,” she added.