Ahram Online journalist wins 2017 Nile Media Award for Ethiopian dam story

Menna Alaa El-Din , Tuesday 24 Oct 2017

Bassem Abo Alabbas
Ahram Online's journalist Bassem Abo Alabbas (Photo Courtesy of Nile Basin Initiative)

A panel of judges has awarded Egyptian Ahram Online journalist Bassem Abo Alabass the Nile Media Award for the category of digital media for his exclusive story on the Ethiopian Grand Renaissance Dam in 2016.

The announcement was made during the 5th Nile Basin Development Forum in the Rwandan capital of Kigali on Monday, nearly a month after Abo Alabass received news from the Nile Basin Initiative (NBI) of his status as the only Egyptian finalist for the award.

The winning piece was one of many written by the journalist on the topics of water affairs and relationships between Nile Basin countries.

Abo Alabass developed the story through a series of field visits and examination of scientific perspectives on the dam's potential effects on Egypt's Nile water share.

The story encouraged a wholly new focus on the dam, which has long been a source of controversy and worry among Egyptians.

"It's really honourable to get the prize for the article that may have helped Egyptians know what they needed to know about the Grand Ethiopian Dam," Abo Alabass said moments after he took the stage in the Rwandan capital to receive his award.

The award for the digital publication category was newly introduced for the 2017 NBI Nile Media Awards. 

This year's theme is "Cooperation on the Nile Basin," which organisers say includes addressing challenges such as climate change, the maximization of socioeconomic benefits, minimizing risks and costs of development projects, and promoting regional peace and security through the cooperative management and use of shared Nile Basin water resources.

The 2017 Nile Media Awards, which also include print, radio, television, and photography categories, is organised with support from GIZ and in partnership with Nile Basin Discourse, Global Water Partnership Eastern Africa, Media in Communication Training (MICT), Deutsche Welle Akademie, and Africa Water Journalists.

Read more of Abo Alabass's articles here


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