He is daring; a freethinker, not bound by societal restrictions or limitations. His whole being yearns for justice; justice for the high and for the low. He is as versatile as they come; young though he is, he possesses abilities that belie his relative youth. Mannaseh Azure Awuni, the award winning journalist from Ghana is a shining star.
Mannaseh is yet another proof that the lowly in wealth can yet excel in life. Due to the impecuniosity of his illiterate Father, Mannaseh was the first child in his family of ten siblings that was granted the privilege of a tertiary education. After his studies at the Krachi Senior High School before which he had obtained the highest grades in the Kete Krachi district in the Basic Education Certification Examination [BECE], he studied at the Ghana Institute of Journalism [GIJ]. The Writer whose role model is the late Chinualumogu Achebe earned his MA in Communication Studies at the University of Ghana, Legon.
Long before the completion of his formal training, Manasseh was writing and dabbling in various forms of journalism. He was his group’s representative on the editorial board of The Communicator, a Newspaper published by the Ghana Institute of Journalism. He also started the Secondary Times Newspaper for senior high schools and acted as the reporter, publisher, editor and distributor. Although he did not earn a first class degree as his lecturers, friends and family envisioned he should, he completed his studies with practical experience and a clear direction of the path his journalism was going to take. In his words, “I started getting job offers while I was still in school. And I have rejected many job offers since leaving school. Prospective employers do not ask about my class [of degree]. They cite my writings.”
In 2011, the same year Manasseh graduated from GIJ, he stunned the journalistic community and Ghanaians at large when he upstaged the Ghana Journalists Association Awards by carting away prizes for the Human Rights Reporter of the Year, the Best TV News Reporter and the Most Promising Young Journalist of the Year. He repeated the feat again when he was awarded the Best Report in Feature Writing (Print), Best Report on Sanitation, Best Report on TV News and Journalist of the year.
Kofi Yeboah a fellow journalist had this to say about Mannaseh; “He’s the only journalist I’ve come across in the country who combines television, radio and print reporting, and in all of them, he comes through as a master of the game. Sometimes, I wonder how he’s able to do all that. But one thing is certain though; he’s driven by a strong passion to use his pen to effect change in society, particularly by championing the cause of the under-privileged and socially excluded.” Great testimony; and he is not the only admirer. Scores of writers and journalists pour effusive praise on the young journalist from Ghana.
Mannaseh is presently a Senior Broadcast Journalist at Joy 99.7 FM, a position he has held since November 2011, and doubles as a freelance journalist in Accra, Ghana.