Dec 16, 2011, 1:27 PM
It is with the greatest of pride that we received the news that the late, great Deyda Hydara, co-proprietor and managing editor of The Point, will be honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award for the year 2009 by the African People's Intercontinental Awards
So often we see awards given to people who can scarcely be said to deserve them but in this case the award is truly and richly deserved. Deyda was a lion in his struggle for press freedom and freedom of expression. His reputation has grown and grown in the years since his brutal, cold-blooded murder and he is now not only a hero to us here in The Gambia but all over the globe. It must be a kick in the teeth for his cowardly killers to see the great reverence afforded to Deyda while they crawl on their bellies in the shadows like the snakes they are.
"Among the aims and objectives of the African People's Intercontinental Awards is to highlight and honor Africans and descendants of Africa around the world who have excelled in their profession. We see it as an obligation to promote people with great repute within our community", a news release from APIA stated. This description describes Deyda perfectly. He was meticulous in his work and is an example to journalists here and all over the world. Unfortunately he paid the ultimate price for his professionalism.
This is of course only the most recent award that Deyda has received. Since his murder Deyda has received numerous awards. Late last year he was the recipient of the West African Journalists Association lifetime achievement award and we have no doubt that this trend will continue long into the future long after his detractors are forgotten in the sands of time.
Deyda will be rightly honoured at an event to be held at the prestigious WashingtonConvention Center, 801 Mount Vernon Place NW, Washington DC 20001 on June 4, 2009 at 7pm. We look forward to that day with pride and know it will be only one of many to come. In light of this latest award we also call on the government of The Gambia to reopen the investigation into Deyda's death and bring the killer or killers to justice. The eyes of the world will be on us once again in relation to this case we must be seen to be utterly tireless in our fight for justice in this case.
"Heroing is one of the shortest-lived professions there is."