Seventh edition of West Africa’s biggest journalism event opens on November 9

West Africa’s biggest journalism event, WAMECA, enters its seventh edition this year. From November 9 to 11, the 2023 edition of the West Africa Media Excellence Conference and Awards (WAMECA) will come off in Ghana’s capital, Accra.

The two-part event will consist of a conference which will run from November 9 – 10, and an awards night which will come off on November 11. Both the conference and awards will be hosted at the World Trade Center, within the Ministries enclave in Accra.

WAMECA 2023 will be held under the theme: Media and Democracy in Africa; and will have as Guest of Honor, the distinguished democracy and human rights advocate, Femi Falana, SAN. It will also host stakeholders in media and democracy from across Africa, including Ambassador Abdel-Fatau Musah, Commissioner, Political Affairs, Peace and Security, PAPS- ECOWAS who will deliver the keynote address.

Other important speakers at the conference will include H.E. Virginia E. Palmer, US Ambassador to Ghana, Tidiane Sy – Founder & Editor, Ouestaf News, Senegal, and Mr. Sadat Anwar, Acting Country Director of OXFAM – Ghana

The conference will bring together government actors, media actors, democracy and governance experts, media activists, academics, members of the diplomatic corps and distinguished journalists.

WAMECA 2023 will host four panels which will discuss the ongoing democratic recession in Africa under the topics – Corruption, Illicit Financial Flows and Democratic Governance in West Africa; The Media, Digital Public Infrastructure Policies and Development in West Africa; Rebuilding and Consolidating Democracy in West Africa: the role of the Media and other stakeholders, and, Mis/disinformation and the threat to democracy in Africa.

Discussants are expected to make recommendations at the end of every panel discussion which will constitute actionable takeaways for media activists, democracy activists, academics, journalists and policymakers.

The conference will then be crowned with an awards night on Saturday, November 11, where journalists in the sub-region who have produced compelling and impactful works will be acknowledged with prizes.

This year’s WAMECA awards received 825 entries from journalists in all 15 West African countries. A jury of 3 judges shortlisted 17 finalists who will be honoured at the event.

West Africa Media Excellence Conference and Awards (WAMECA 2023) is supported by US Embassy in Ghana, OXFAM Ghana, West Africa Democracy Solidarity Network (WADEMOS), MTN-Ghana, and Stanbic Bank Ghana. The event is also supported by about 50 media partners across West Africa.