Wole Soyinka 2017 Award for Investigative Reporting (How to Apply)

The Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Journalism (WSCIJ) is a not-for-profit, non-governmental organisation with social justice programmes aimed at exposing corruption, regulatory failures and human rights abuses with the tool of investigative journalism.

Applications are invited for:

Title:  Wole Soyinka Award for Investigative Reporting 2017


  • The Award is open to any Nigerian professional reporter or team of reporters (full time or freelancers), 18-years and above, who have published stories either online, in print, or through electronic media primarily targeted at and received by a Nigerian audience.


  • Print
  • Radio
  • Television
  • Photography
  • Online
  • Editorial Cartoon


  • The main criterion for eligibility is that the work (single work or single-subject serial) involves reporting on public and or corporate corruption, human rights violation, or on the failure of regulatory agencies.
  • The story (whether electronic, print, online, visual or graphic) should reflect high quality of investigation in terms of newsworthiness, capacity to expose or prevent corruption in the public domain, an understanding of human rights implications of the story and quality of delivery/presentation/writing. Such a work should have been first published or broadcast in a Nigerian media between 4th October, 2016 and 3rd October, 2017.

An applicant may only submit a maximum of a total of two entries.
Print Entries -Newspaper and Magazine:

  • Entrants are required to send the original and a CLEAN Photocopy

Broadcast Entries – Radio and Television:

  • Transcripts should be written in English language
  • Audio entries should be sent in audio CD format, with accompanying script; video entries must be on VCD, with accompanying script.
  • 2 copies of each entry is required

Photographic Entries:

  • In addition to the broad criteria, photo entries will be scored on quality of investigation, human rights elements, visual interest, power to evoke emotions and quality of technique
  • Each entry must be well captioned in English
  • It must come with the original photo and a copy of the published work with clean photocopy of the latter and a CD with the picture(s)

Online Entries:

  • Clearly indicated URL (web link) for the published work is required as print out is unacceptable
  • Entry should be sent online to: entries@wscij.org

Editorial Cartoon:

  • In addition to the broad criteria, editorial cartooning will also be scored on impact, creativity and originality.
  • An original copy of the published work with clean photocopy are required

Special Prize For Reporting Food Security And Agriculture:

  • A special prize for reporting food security and agriculture has been introduced this year as a part of WSCIJ’s media engagement programme on food security and agriculture in collaboration with Oxfam’s Voices for Food Security.
  • The programme plans to improve media and public awareness on issues surrounding agriculture generally and food security in particular in the country.
  • The prize on its part will serve as an encouragement to reporters who have been dedicated to reporting the issues.


  • Entry is free.
  • Only a maximum of two entries across all categories of the award will be allowed per entrant.
  • All submitted works must be in English Language.
  • The reporter with the most outstanding work(s) amongst the finalists will be selected as the WSCIJ-Nigerian Investigative Reporter of the year.
  • Entering for this competition commits you to grant WSCIJ a worldwide, perpetual, royalty-free licence to use your works for any purpose deemed appropriate for the development of the award initiative, the Centre and the Nigerian and global media.
  • To enhance the development of media in the country, reporters that have been winners in this competition on at least three occasions are ineligible to enter.
  • Employees of the WSCIJ and/or their immediate families are ineligible to participate in the competition.
  • WSCIJ guarantees that there is no connection between any sponsor and the judging process despite possible sponsorship of some categories of the award.
  • The competition shall be covered and interpreted with the laws of Nigeria.

Judging Process

  • A distinguished judges’ board, which comprises respected persons with suitable knowledge, competencies and experience in news media practice, shall adjudge the competition.
  • All entries are coded to disguise media house and reporter’s byline using the WSCIJ entry coding system before dispatch to judges
  • Judges’ board members can only assess, score or vote on works to which they have no organisational or family ties.
  • Due to WSCIJ’s commitment to excellence, it will be in order to have categories without a finalist if the entries in such a category are adjudged to have fallen below expected standard.
  • The rigorous eligibility and judging process uphold the integrity and reputation of the Wole Soyinka Award for Investigative Reporting 2017 competition. The judges reserve the right to disqualify any piece of work and/or finalist if, in the judges’ opinion, there exists reasonable doubt about the authenticity and/or accuracy of the submitted entry and/or the integrity of the finalists based on the set criteria.
  • WSCIJ award recipients (Soyinka Laureates, runners-up and commended finalists) are expected to be persons with high ethical and professional standards. The organisation reserves the right to withdraw awards at any point in time based on the misconduct of an award recipient.
  • Only entries received by the deadline will be treated.

Application Closing Date
Tuesday 4pm; 24th October, 2017.

Method of Application
Interested and qualified applicants should kindly send their entries to:
The Centre Coordinator,
18A, Abiodun Sobanjo Street,
Off Lateef Jakande Road, 

Agidingbi, Ikeja,
Lagos State.

Submission Process
The submitted package should include:

  • A brief synopsis of the story/series, picture, or portfolio.

In the synopsis, the applicant is expected to:

  • Explain the background of the project, identifying the issues and key players.
  • Describe what led to the topic or caption, any unusual condition faced in developing the project and whether the investigation had any ramifications.
  • Describe challenges to the content of the story/series that were not reported in the original work.
  • Include up-to-date curriculum vitae for every reporter who bears the byline of the story with passport photograph(s)
  • Include any relevant background information on submitted work(s)

  • Synopsis should be in English and a maximum of 400 words
  • All submissions (apart from the online entry where submission is to be made by email) should be in hard copy for all categories.

Click here for more Informations

Updated: October 25, 2017 — 6:26 am

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