Trevor Ncube, executive deputy chairman of the South Africa-based Mail & Guardian and founder of the Zimbabwe-based The Standard and The Zimbabwe Independent, has been appointed co-chair of the African Media Initiative (AMI) board.
Hunter-Gault and Ncube were appointed at the just ended Africa Media Leadership Forum in Lagos, Nigeria where over 120 media entrepreneurs and senior executives from over 42 African countries were represented.
The meeting was also attended by the World Bank and other African financial institutions interested in investing in media on the continent.
Commenting on the appointment, Amadou Mahtar Ba, executive director of the initiative said: “I am delighted that Trevor Ncube, one of the most accomplished media personalities on the African continent, has agreed to join the AMI board. I am honored to have the opportunity to be working under his leadership for the years to come.”
The African Media Initiative (AMI) is a pan-African effort to improve democratic governance, social development and economic growth in Africa by strengthening the continent’s media sector. This continental initiative, supported by a coalition of African media entrepreneurs, executives, journalism experts and media academics, aims to support the development and leadership of a private media sector that is ethical, quality, sustainable and adaptable so that it can fully serve the needs and interests of its audiences and citizens.
The AMI mission is based on the importance of professional ethics and sound management in the private media sector in Africa. This includes the innovative and responsible adaptation of new technology, and a commitment to reaching rural and other marginalised audiences that have long been underserved in African media markets.
AMI includes representatives from all regions of the continent, as well as from all media: print, broadcast and electronic with many participating media houses engaged in all of these interlocking platforms.
AMI is grounded in the largest consultation and research process on the media ever to take place in Africa, under the auspices of the UN Economic Commission for Africa and the BBC World Service Trust and led by African journalists, scholars and professionals.
Hunter-Gault said, “This is an ambitious project towards strengthening the private media on the continent and it is a great honor to be part of it. The quality of management, availability of funds for new media projects and expansion and the restrictive political environment for media on the continent are issues that will receive our attention.”
Said Ncube,”I am pleased to join the AMI board as co-chair and to share my experience and knowledge with a highly talented and diverse group of professionals from Africa. It is time that the continent seriously addresses the core constraints which hinder the development of our nations and societies and we know that without a strong and professional media, economic and human development will remain stunted.”
Other members of the AMI board are:
- Kaitira Kandji (Namibia), Regional Director of the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA)
- Marie Roger Biloa (Cameroon), CEO Africa :International magazine
- Paolo Gomes (Guinea Bissao), CEO Constelor Group and former World Bank Executive Director
- Mathatha Tsedu, (South Africa), Chair The African editors Forum
- Professor Kwame Kari Kari (Ghana), Executive Director Media Foundation of West Africa
- Eric Chinje (Cameroon), Manager External Relations and Communication World Bank Africa Region
- Nduka Obaigbena (Nigeria), Chairman and CEO THISDAY
- Linus Gitahi (Kenya), CEO Nation Media Group