The Institute of Maltese Journalists (Istitut tal-Ġurnalisti Maltin) have awarded the annual Gold Award to slain journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia. She is the first woman to ever win the award, one of the highest levels of recognition for Maltese journalists by Maltese journalists.
The award was announced by IĠM acting chairperson Norma Saliba at this year’s edition of the Malta Journalism Awards, but was explained further in a letter printed in the awards programme.
In the letter, Mario Schiavone, a founding member of the IĠM, recounted last year’s edition of the Malta Journalism Awards, where he had praised Matthew Caruana Galizia for being awarded a Pulitzer prize.
“Who would have imagined that one year later we would be here celebrating his mother – another journalist – who was not given a Pulitzer for her work, but given death,” he said.
He condemned her murder and the brutal way it was carried out, and said that he believed she was targeted for what she wrote on her blog.
In the days following her death, the IĠM brought a large number of Maltese media houses together to launch the Il-Pinna Tirbaħ Lill-Biża’ (The Pen Conquers Fear) campaign, as well as organise a peaceful demonstration that saw scores of Maltese journalists gather in Valletta.
The institute decided that the 2018 Gold Award should be given to Ms Caruana Galizia, and not open the ballot to nominations as is the usual practice. Ms Caruana Galizia now joins a number of celebrated Maltese journalists including Lino Spiteri, Fr Joe Borg, John Manduca, and J.G. Vassallo.