Hamid Fatimah Omotayo reports,

Two Pen Press Journalists, Abiodun Jamiu, a 400-Level student of Political Science at Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto, doubling as President of National Association of Campus Journalists, UDUS, and Abdulrasheed Hammad, a 400-Level student of Law and Editor-in-Chief of Pen Press UDUS, have emerged as the winner of the ICIR Investigative/Data Journalism award of the year 2021.

Abiodun Jamiu was announced as the overall winner of the contest and Abdulrasheed Hammad bagged the second runner-up. The winners were announced at the UCJ UI awards dinners/handover ceremony which took place on Saturday 23rd October 2021, at Abubakar Abdulsalami hall, University of Ibadan, Oyo State.

Recall that five campus journalists were shortlisted as finalists out of the pool of entries received across the tertiary institution in Nigeria where three of the five shortlisted campus journalists were announced as the winner.

The overall winner, as promised, went home with a grand prize of N120 with an internship opportunity at the ICIR while the first runner-up and second runner-up went home with N80,000 and N50,000 respectively with an internship opportunity.

In an exclusive interview with Abiodun Jamiu, he expressed his happiness for being the winner of this year’s UCJ UI/ ICIR award. He noted that he was speechless and could not still believe it.

“As I have always said, awards aren’t just validation, it’s the world telling me to do more. This is a testament to the fact that consistency pays,” he said.

While speaking with PEN PRESS, Abdulrasheed Hammad said that he was super excited to have emerged as one of the winners of the ICIR Investigative/Data Journalism award.

“Well, I have applied for numerous awards and media opportunities that I was not shortlisted for, but I thank God for making me among the winners of this ICIR award,” he noted.

He, however, advised fellow campus journalists to be persistent in what they are doing.

“They should not relent if they are facing rejections because rejection would make them stronger,” he added.

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