Pacific Media Watch

17 July 2017

REGION: Wansolwara student journalist among 10 chosen for COP23 Pacific team

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COP23 Pacific-sponsored reportage. Image: Flickr/birdyartworks/UNFCCC

AUCKLAND (Asia Pacific Report/UNFCCC Newsroom/Pacific Media Watch): A Wansolwara second-year student journalist from the University of the South Pacific has been included among 10 Pacific journalists who have been chosen to report from this year’s United Nations climate conference (COP23) taking place in Bonn, Germany, on November 6-17.

USP’s Mereoni Mili is one of two radio journalists selected.

The journalists from print, online and radio/TV will receive sponsored participation in the conference, media training at the DW Akademie and access to UN and other experts.

The Pacific Island journalism competition reflects the important role the small island developing state of Fiji will be playing at the 23rd Conference of Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change – the official title of the conference.

Fiji will be presiding over COP23 and the Fijian Prime Minister, Voreqe Bainimarama, will undertake the key role of COP President on behalf of all countries attending.

The competition was generously funded by the German government’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Nick Nuttall, Director of Communications of the UNFCCC and Spokesperson for COP23, said:

High standard
“We are impressed by the high standard of the entries to the competition and would have liked to invite everyone who submitted their work under the competition, but that is unfortunately not possible.

“We’re now looking forward to welcoming the 10 winners in Bonn in November.

“I would like to express my deep gratitude to the Germany’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs for financially supporting this competition, and to the Fijian COP23 Presidency for its advice and getting the message out about the competition in the Pacific region.

“The presidency, the government of Germany and the UNFCCC were concerned that the costs of getting to and from Bonn would have been prohibitive for many journalists from that region.”

“We all acknowledged that it was vital to have media from that location here to report to their publics and witness the negotiations, the rich array of global climate action events taking place and the cultural activities that surround such conferences,” he added.

The 10 participants were selected by a judging committee consisting of two members of the UNFCCC; two from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs communications branch; and two independent judges representing the Fijian COP23 Presidency.

The decision of the jury was final.

The jury selected six winners from print and online, two from radio and two from TV.

The winners are:
Print and online: 
Ofani Eremae (Solomon Star, Solomon Islands)
Iliesa Tora (The Nuku’alofa Times, Tonga)
Lani Wendt Young (Samoa Planet, Samoa)
Jared Koli (The Island Sun, Solomon Islands)
Lice Movono (The Fiji Times, Fiji)
Anita Roberts (Vanuatu Daily Post, Vanuatu)

Mereoni Mili (Wansolwara, University of the South Pacific, Fiji)
Georgina Kekea (Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation, Solomon Islands)

Elenoa Turagaiviu (FBC News, Fiji)
Florence Jonduo (EMTV, Papua New Guinea)

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