Albania: EU Award for Investigative Journalism announced

Journalist Alisa Mysliu was awarded first prize in the contest for the 2016 EU Investigative Journalism Award for Albania, for her cycle of programs on food security, broadcast in Fiks Fare program, on national Top Channel TV.

Second prize went to Artan Rama and his team of Publicus program on Vizion Plus TV for their report on maturity exam procedures.

The award for best article by young investigative journalist was given to Elvis Nabolli for his report on the struggle against drugs and the cultivation of illegal plants in Albanian territory, published by Balkan Insight.

The award ceremony was held on June 7th, 2017 in Tirana.

A total of 28 investigative stories were nominated for this year’s EU Award in Albania, 18 of which from journalists under 35.

The jury consisted of five prominent media professionals and civil society representatives: Rrapo Zguri, professor of journalism and jury chair; Aleksander Cipa, head of the Union of Albanian Journalists; Valbona Sulce, media expert and member of the Steering Council of the public broadcaster; Lutfi Dervishi, media expert; and Adi Krasta, TV personality.

“Freedom of expression and freedom of the media implies a commitment to democracy, good governance and political accountability. These are some of prerequisites for a country to become part of the EU and one of the reasons why each of you play such an important role in creating EU standards,” said Jan Rudolph, Head of Political, Economic and Information Section announcing the EU Investigative Journalism Awards.

Valbona Sulce, member of the jury, stated that the jury faced a difficult task, given that the quality of nominations was good, covering a wide range of topics that are relevant to the society. In addition, the predominance of young journalists among the nominations received is also a good sign for the future of investigative journalism in the country, she said.

The EU award for investigative journalism has been administered annually since 2015 in each of the seven EU-Enlargement countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey, rewarding the investigative journalistic work published in 2014, 2015 and 2016. It is intended for investigative stories contributing to transparency and reporting on societal issues related to abuse of power and fundamental rights, corruption and organized crime that otherwise would not have been brought to the public’s attention.

The regional coordination of the award is done by Peace Institute in Ljubljana, a SEENPM member.

The article was originally published by SEE Media Observatory