Pacific Media Watch

27 April 2015

NZ: Fiji elections reporter scores double for diversity, Asia-Pacific journalism

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Award-winner Alistar Kata with Spasifik magazine publisher Innes Logan (left), Pacific Media Centre director professor David Robie and the Storyboard for diversity journalism at AUT University. Image: Michael Neilson/PMC

Michael Neilson
AUCKLAND (Pacific Scoop/Pasifik Nius/Pacific Media Watch): A student who was part of the award-winning team covering the Fiji elections last September picked up a rare award double at the AUT University’s School of Communications 2014 media awards last week.

Alistar Kata won two awards – the Spasifik Magazine Prize and Storyboard Award for diversity reporting, and also the Radio New Zealand International Award for Asia-Pacific journalism.

The awards recognise her work in reporting on diversity, especially issues in the Pacific.

Kata thanked the Pacific Media Centre’s director Professor David Robie for assigning her to Fiji, where she covered video stories of the Fiji elections for both Wansolwara newspaper and Pacific Scoop, and her family for their love and support.

She was part of a three-member student team who won the Ossie Award for Best Use of Convergent Media last November for their Fiji coverage.

“I am especially honoured to get this award because we sometimes lack diversity reporting in mainstream media, and it is something that we absolutely need more of,” Kata said about the Storyboard.

‘Engaging stories’
She said it was great to be in Fiji, “engaging with people and their issues, and I was able to tell their stories the way that they wanted them to be told.”

Dr Robie said: “Alistar did a really tremendous portfolio of stories on diversity right through her Asia-Pacific course, but also her general reporting about Fiji and West Papua.

“It was a whole range of really well-balanced and well-researched stories.”

Innes Logan, founder and editor of Spasifik magazine, who presented the Spasifik prize and Diversity award, said recognising excellence in reporting on diversity in New Zealand was very important.

“We are in a region where a lot of Pacific stuff is happening.

“Our primary audience for Spasifik is for Pacific people but I really want to use it as a window for others so they can get some insight into what we are like – our views and our ways.”

Leilani Momoisea of Radio New Zealand International, herself a former AUT radio graduate, presented the Asia-Pacific Journalism award, a prize she said was “dear to our hearts”.

Sasya Wreksono’s double award

Radio NZ International’s Leilani Momoisea with Alistar Kata. Image: Doug Cole/AUT

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Michael Neilson

PMC reporter 2015

Michael Neilson is a native of Christchurch, and moved north to Auckland in 2015 to study for a Postgraduate Diploma in Journalism at AUT University.