Call for entries – Uganda National Journalism Awards, 2015

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The African Centre for Media Excellence invites submissions for the Uganda National Journalism Awards (UNJA), 2015.

Now in their second year, the awards seek to recognise and promote excellent reporting that informs and empowers the public, increases the voices and spaces for critical information, and holds the powerful to account.

ACME has received more funding from HIVOS, a Dutch international development organisation, to recognise next year excellence in the journalism done in 2014.

Submission of entries will open on 15 October  2014 and close on 15 January  2015.

A panel of 14 judges made up of former journalists, media academics, and other related professionals of high repute will give awards based on the following criteria:

  • Accuracy and comprehensiveness
  • Writing style, language and storytelling technique
  • Originality and enterprise in reporting
  • Reporting rigour, depth and breadth of discussion and engagement
  • Skill in use of journalistic tools for original reporting
  • Insight, analysis and examination of the context of the story
  • Relevance and public impact or benefit


This year, four new categories have been added to the awards list: agriculture reporting; data journalism; justice, law and order; and photojournalism. This brings to 20 the number of categories for which journalists can compete. These are:

  • Agriculture
  • Arts and culture
  • Business, economy and finance
  • Commentary and opinion
  • Data journalism
  • Editorial cartooning
  • Energy, oil, gas and mineral resources
  • Environment
  • Explanatory reporting
  • Feature writing
  • Health
  • Investigative reporting
  • Crime, justice, law and order
  • Multimedia journalism
  • National news reporting (broadcast)
  • National news reporting (print)
  • Photojournalism
  • Politics
  • Local reporting
  • Sports

“This year, ACME would like to build on the momentum of the inaugural awards, but also to broaden the scope to accommodate key or emerging areas such as agriculture, justice, law and order, photojournalism and data journalism,” said Dr Monica B. Chibita, chair of ACME’s board of directors.

“We thank HIVOs for their generous support, and we know we can count on the support of local media and other partners as well. We believe it is important to continue recognising excellence in journalism in this manner.”

What to submit

  • Work published or broadcast in a Ugandan media outlet or a regional news outlet with wide distribution in Uganda.
  • Exceptional work broadcast or published between 1 January and 31 December 2014.
  • Any news article, broadcast programme or series, covering a single topic or subject in the categories listed for competition.
  • Local language articles and broadcasts, accompanied with English translations or transcripts.

The Prizes

A substantial cash prize and commemorative plaque will be awarded to the winners and runners up in each category.

ACME’s Executive Director, Dr. Peter Mwesige, said up to Shs60 million was up for the taking in cash prizes.  “This year only the winners received cash prizes of Shs2.5 million each,” he said. “In next year’s competition, runners up will also receive substantial cash prizes.”

Winners of the awards will be announced at a grand gala ceremony to be held in April 2015.


No entry fee is required.

The awards are open to journalists, freelance or full-time, working in Uganda.

Full details about how to enter the competition, guidelines for submission of entries and eligibility requirements are available on this page.


For inquiries, call Rachel Mugarura-Mutana on +256 752 695588 or write to


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