State of the Union Coalition (SOTU) Journalist Competition 2016 ($USD 2,500+ Prize)

Submission Deadline: May 31st 2016 at 11:59 (GMT +3).

The State of the Union Coalition (SOTU) calls out for submissions of articles from journalists working in the 10 African countries SOTU has membership; Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon, Senegal, Kenya, Rwanda, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa and Tunisia. The competition is open to African journalists reporting on Human Rights and Governance issues in the print and digital media.

The State of the Union Coalition (SOTU) is a coalition of civil society organizations working together to advocate for the ratification, domestication, and implementation of African Union (AU) instruments (i.e. treaties, policy frameworks and standards). SOTU believes that the successful implementation of these instruments will have tremendous and positive impact on the lives millions of African citizens.

Theme: Human Rights and Governance in Africa


Your article must fall into one of these categories;

  1. 1. Corruption
  2. 2. Food Security
  3. 3. Women
  4. 4. Youth

Eligibility and Dates 

  • The competition is open to all bona fide practising journalists from Africa who must be African Citizens.
  • SOTU is looking at having new and fresh submissions that must have been published in May 2016.
  • The articles must make reference to at least 1 of the 14 SOTU focus AU legal instruments & policy standards. Refer to them on;

Class of Entries

  • – Print and Digital


Entries must be in the 4 select African Union languages;

i) English ii) French iii) Portuguese and iv) Arabic

Broad Rules of the competition 

  • – The competition shall be open to all print media journalists who are citizens of AU member states and who are based in Africa and whose publications are published in AU member states.
  • – Winners will be selected from the 10 participating countries, 1 each from print and online/digital. Additionally, there will be 2 regional winners and an overall winner.
  • – Each journalist entering the competition shall be required to show proof that he/she is a citizen of an AU member state
  • – Each entry shall be accompanied by full names of the writer, the name and contact details of his/her employer, his/ her position in the news organisation and region from where the entry is emanating:
  • – Should you be selected, a written confirmation on official letterhead from the media organisation employing the journalists, confirming his/ her employment in the agency and confirming the dates of publication of all the submitted entries will be required.
  • – On receipt, the entries will be judged by a competent panel of judges established by the SOTU coalition.
  • – Entries from qualified female journalists are encouraged.

How to enter 

Submissions sent without the required accompanying documentation will be disqualified. The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into after the closing dates.


Winners in each of the categories will receive $500 and the overall winner will receive an additional cash prize of $500

Selection Criteria 

Entries will be evaluated on their potential to educate and inform diverse audiences about issues related to African Union Agenda in line with the theme of the awards. The judges will score entries on the following criteria.

  • – Accuracy and fairness
  • – Present innovative or enhanced approach on issues
  • – Relevance to the public policy and debate
  • – Easily understood by the targeted audience
  • – Quality of presentation

How to submit 

Interested journalists are invited to submit entries to the SOTU Secretariat. The entries for print should be a scanned copy of the published article with accompanying word version, for digital send a link and a word copy of the article.

Submissions should be sent electronically to [email protected]

For any inquiries about the competition email SOTU Secretariat: [email protected]

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the State of the Union Coalition (SOTU) Journalist Competition 2016


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