This is more of a roll call than it is a post. I want to use this space to recognize black women journalists who have covered Africa-related content. (I’m referring to countries and regions in Africa, because we know that Africa is not a country). I’m an advocate for seeing more women in news bureaus. It’s not always easy to get there and the women who do get in sometimes contend with sexual harassment, lesser pay than their male colleagues and microaggressions intended to question their competence.
News companies benefit from having journalists of diverse backgrounds on their payroll. Once upon a time, we did not see black people and people of African lineage reporting on current affairs in Africa for news outlets based in North America and Europe. But times changed and we started seeing them or reading their stories: Howard French, Joseph Warungu, Komla Dumor, Chike Frankie Edozien, Clive Myrie, Vladimir Duthiers, Jeff Koinange, Keith Richburg, Percy Qoboza.
We’ve seen women, too: Ofeibea Quist-Arcton, Catherine Wambua- Soi, Charlayne Hunter-Gault, Stephanie Busari, Femi Oke, Yvonne Ndege, Sophie Ikenya, Nima Elbagir. I look up to many of these women and I’ve worked alongside a few of them. I celebrate their successes. I squealed with glee when I learned that Monica Mark was named as New York Times’ Johannesburg bureau chief this year. African women have been killing it with the BBC’s Komla Dumor Award. Four of the six winners have been women.
So, I just want to give a shout to these women with a roll call. I’ll kick it off and I ask you to join in. Give a shoutout to a black or African female journalist who’s done her part in covering some part of Africa.
Now, it’s your turn. Which female journalist do you admire?