Protest image lands photojournalist an award
AFRICAN News Agency (ANA) photojournalist Phandulwazi “Phando” Jikelo has won a top international news photography award, beating close to 5 000 entrants from 76 countries.
Jikelo’s winning entry, called Grabouw Housing Protest, won him the prestigious Andrei Stenin International Press Photo Contest yesterday.
The entry featured a photo of a protesting man swinging a burning tyre, trying to prevent police from approaching a group of other protesters who were standing behind him.
The intense visual was taken during the land invasion and protests over shortage of houses in Grabouw, near Cape Town. The newspaper used the image as a banner picture.
Jikelo, 33, was working for the Cape Times when he took the image before he later joined ANA. He has six years’ experience as a professional photographer.
He said the honour of receiving an award will make him work ever harder.
“It has come at the right time of my career and life. I never thought that I could win an international competition. I was just doing my work, like the rest of the photographers were doing theirs. I’m just glad that my work is recognised internationally and the fact that our African stories are told by Africans. I will always push myself to achieve more,” said Jikelo.
Independent Media executive chairperson Dr Iqbal Survé congratulated Jikelo and said the award was an acknowledgement of his excellent work.
“We must not forget the reasons why he was in Grabouw on that day, and how dangerous the situation was.
“I commend him for being a fearless photojournalist. As an ardent news-follower, I have, over the years, been able to identify the styles of many of our photojournalists, Phando being one of them. He has the eye and the fearless heart of a photojournalist,” said Survé. – Staff Reporter