Al-Jazeera journalist and documentary Maker Mohamed Abdihakim Wins inaugural UK Embassy Journalism Awards.
Al-Jazera Journalist and documentary maker Mohamed Abdihakim has emerged the winner of this year's Somalia He emerged the winner in a competition that saw writers, filmmakers, broadcaster and photographers put in their works for the first competition organised by the British Embassy. The documentary filmmaker a journalist attached to Al-Jazeera and Ruptly media, was declared the winner in a competition that brought together journalists from Somalia and Somaliland. The UK is keen to reward journalists who demonstrate positive and original stories about Somalia, a country that is yet to recover from inter-clan conflicts and terrorist threats. For three decades, the media has tried to balance positive and negative stories about Somalia, with the latter domineering. While accepting the honour, Abdihakim said: "The award is in recognition for journalists who have demonstrated positive, original and unique stories about Somalia." Besides working for the two stations, he's also the co-founder of the Foresight media, an organization which films and posts stories about Somalia. The winning documentary captured by Abdihakim, shows a woman, Asha Ali, voluntarily teaching Internally Displaced Persons. In her own words, UK Somalia said, "Asha shares her story of being an internally displaced person and her commitment to the next generation of Somalis." She was displaced two decades ago but believes she has much to offer to her country given the opportunity, she narrates in the documentary. With frequent Al-Shabaab attacks and ballooning poverty index, it's difficult for children in Somalia to get an education, the World Bank had noted. Runners up in the awards Zakaria Abdulkadir, another filmmaker, was the runners up in the awards which could be a turning point for journalists in Somalia. In his clip, he highlights the Somalia culture and food, which are rarely talked about in the global arena, the UK in Somalia added Aidarous Abdilahi Ismael, from Somaliland, a breakaway region in the far North, was ranked as the second runners up. He posted a clip of a disabled young man from Hargeisa, who is passionate about football despite the prevailing conditions. Dubbed as the Young Somali Voices journalism prize (YSV), the award will highlight the importance of defending media freedom and demonstrate the key role that the media play in creating an inclusive and open society in Somalia. It will also seek to identify and project young Somali voices and positive stories about Somalia. The new prize was announced during World Press Freedom Day celebrations held at the British Embassy Mogadishu and co-hosted by Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Somalia, Ben Fender, and representatives from the United Nations office in Somalia. The event provided a platform for a cross section of Somali journalists to raise awareness of the challenges and opportunities they face with regard to media freedom in Somalia. Speaking after the event, the British Ambassador to Somalia said: “A free press is our best defence against corruption, extremism and abuse of power. Media freedom is under increasing attack in Somalia as journalists are routinely subjected to intimidation, harassment and persecution. I look forward to continuing our work with the media, civil society organisations, international partners and the Government of Somalia to address these challenges together