On June 27 last year, Lianhe Zaobao correspondent Nam Yunzhou, 31, and chief videographer Lim Seong Teik, 55, were the only journalists at the People’s Action Party headquarters in Bedok when newly introduced candidate Ivan Lim announced he was withdrawing from contesting the July 10 General Election.
Mr Lim pulled out just days before Nomination Day, after allegations about his past conduct emerged online.
For their perseverance in tracking Mr Lim, the duo won the Best Scoop award at the annual awards of Singapore Press Holdings’ (SPH) Chinese Media Group (CMG), held online yesterday.
Mr Nam said: “It’s a tremendous privilege to have played a part in this story, and this accolade is also testament to the hard work and dedication the newsroom puts into presenting quality content to our readership.”
Correspondent Ng Wai Mun won the Best News Report award for her coverage of Workers’ Party chief Pritam Singh apologising for not sending a Mandarin-speaking representative to a live TV debate in the lead-up to the election.
“For many of our readers, this piece of news hit close to their hearts,” said Ms Ng, 32, who added that many were curious about what the opposition party with younger leaders at the helm was like. “It’s very much a team effort during the GE.”
Separately, the effort to document the two-month circuit breaker led to video-editing team leader Lau Leck Gee, executive photographers Kwong Kai Chung, Darwis Sunaryo, Long Kwok Hong and Chia Ti Yan, and journalist Lu Lingzhi winning the Best Video – News award for presenting a different side of Singapore over the period.
A total of 15 awards were presented during the annual award ceremony, which was held in conjunction with CMG’s virtual Chinese New Year get-together.
In his opening speech, SPH chairman Lee Boon Yang said that over the past year, the media played an important part in the fight for health and life as coronavirus infections surged.
He added that he was glad that SPH titles had stood up to the challenge and discharged their duty to provide timely, accurate and reliable pandemic-related information to audiences, including online programmes to engage viewers.
“When needed, you continued to cover important developments and breaking news events,” he said, thanking colleagues in newsrooms for their dedication to duty.
Mr Lee noted that the pandemic is not over yet, and misinformation and fake news continue to circulate on social media over the efficacy, reliability and safety of vaccines approved for use here.
“We need to debunk such misinformation. We need to help build confidence in the vaccines. We need to convince people to get vaccinated. Only then can we truly defeat the virus and stop it from rearing its lethal threat again,” he said.