A FEARLESS and dedicated veteran journalist’s commitment to the profession was acknowledged by the Tur-quoise Harmony Institute (THI) yesterday.
Zubeida Jaffer, whose career spans more than 30 years, was granted the institute’s Media Award.
At a glittering Ubuntu Lecture and Peace and Dialogue Awards ceremony in Monte Casino, where African Union chairperson Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma also received the Gulen Peace Award, Jaffer was presented with the 2015 Media Award for her contribution to a better South Africa through her fearless commitment to journalism and a free press – roles that paved the way to democracy.
Jaffer is also a former trade unionist and anti-apartheid activist. She started work at the former Rand Daily Mail, and then worked at the Cape Times in 1980. Her reporting life coincided with huge historical upheavals in the country and she was detained and tortured twice.
She has won several awards both locally and internationally, including the Muslim Views Achiever Award as well as the Honor Medal for Distinguished Service to Journalism from the University of Missouri in the US. She is also the first woman in Africa to have won the coveted foreign journalist award from the National Association of Black Journalists in the US.
THI executive director Ayhan Cetin said: “She has been demonstrating fearless commitment to journalism for decades on the continent.”
In her acceptance speech, Jaffer said she was pleased to be recognised for her extensive coverage in Africa and globally: “I remain dedicated to excellence in journalism both in my country and on the African continent.”