Two winners of the Sunbird sponsored Tourism Journalist of the Year Award in the Media Institute of Southern Africa – Malawi Chapter (MISAMalawi) World Press Freedom Day awards will this year be treated to a mini-holiday for two.
The award was introduced in 2014 to recognise print and electronic journalists for their objective and detailed reports on tourism in the country and seeks to encourage more in-depth coverage of developments and attractions in the industry.
Announcing the award for this year in Blantyre on Wednesday, Sunbird Tourism public relations officer, Akossa Mphepo, said Malawi is a beautiful country that has so much to offer to both local and international tourists and that the media has a responsibility to report on these positive aspects in a well-thought out and articulated manner.
“We also realise that it is difficult to write something one hasn’t yet experienced, that’s why we have embarked on a programme to expose journalists to places of tourism attraction, starting with a journalists trip to Ku Chawe Inn we undertook last week,” said Mphepo.
She said it is for the same reason that for this year’s media awards, Sunbird has decided to offer three nights for two people at Sunbird Ku Chawe and Sunbird Nkopola for each of the two winners, in addition to the traditional awards selected by MISA Malawi.
She said the three nights stay will include a jeep trip up the Zomba Plateau, a barbeque at the views in Zomba as well as a boat ride and trip to Cape Maclear in Mangochi, among other things.
Commenting on the development, MISA Malawi chairperson Thom Khanje hailed Sunbird for the prize and continued sponsorship of the award, saying the company demonstrates the high regard it has for the media.
He appealed to fellow journalists to consider the award as a motivation for writing good stories about Malawi’s tourism.
“Journalists can contribute to the economic recovery of the country by writing stories that can promote alternative sectors such as tourism,” said Mphepo.
The awards gala will this year take place at Nkopola Lodge in Mangochi on May 7, 2016.