ON THE eve of his departure from Papua New Guinea to attend the Brisbane Writers Festival and undertake other literary engagements, political commentator Martyn Namorong has received a 2016 Divine Word University media excellence award.
Together with veteran journalist Biga Lebasi, who won the award for print journalism, Namorong won the online journalism category.
DWU Council member Sir Peter Barter presented the awards during a ceremony at the Madang campus to commemorate the university’s 20th Foundation Day.
DWU President Professor Cecilia Nembou congratulated Namorong and Lebasi for their professional contributions towards the development of Papua New Guinea.
Lebasi joined the South Pacific Post in 1964 (coincidentally the year I began freelancing for it from Kundiawa) and was later a founder of Air Niugini’s in-flight magazine Paradise. He also had stints with the Prime Minister’s Department and was one of the first journalists to join The National in 1993.
Namorong, a popular figure throughout PNG, was recognised for the widely acclaimed and widely quoted work on his Namorong Report blog, which has the distinction of being archived by the Australian National Library.
The university said Namorong is a civil society leader, political activist and PNG’s most prolific and internationally quoted blogger as well as the winner of two major national awards for writing and journalism.
In 2011, he won the Crocodile Prize for journalism and, in 2012, an award for excellence in anti-corruption reporting.
As a blogger, Martyn tells stories that strike a chord with average people. His understanding of organisations, communities and the power relations that define everyday interactions make him a leading writer and social commentator in PNG.