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Express scribe scoops top HIV reporting award

’Matšei Moloi

MASERU — Sunday Express features writer, Ntsebeng Motsoeli, is the 2009 Red Ribbon Media Award joint-winner.
Motsoeli, 23, walked away with a cheque for M5 000 and a certificate at the 2009 Red Ribbon Media Awards ceremony held in Thaba-Tseka on Wednesday.
She shared the award with Radio Lesotho journalist, ’Matseliso Mosoang, who also walked away with M5 000 and a certificate.
The Red Ribbon Media Awards are organised by the National Aids Commission (NAC) to raise awareness about issues of HIV and Aids.
Motsoeli’s winning entry, which appeared in the Sunday Express’ sister paper, the Lesotho Times, was about the launch of a national HIV/Aids policy at the National University of Lesotho (NUL).
The story exposed the culture of casual sex among students at the NUL.
“The story was of a male student at NUL who contracted HIV at school because of the culture of casual sex practised at the institution,” Motsoeli said.
Motsoeli said although she knew the story she submitted to the NAC was good, she did not think she would win the award as she was fairly junior in the journalism profession.
“I thought I was just too young in the field to win the award. I felt there were many seasoned journalists who were capable of winning the award,” she said.
She said the award had come as a complete surprise.
She said she was not aware that there was to be any handing over of awards at the National Aids Day commemorations in Thaba-Tseka which were officiated by Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili. 
“I was very excited when my name was called. I walked with a smile to the Prime Minister who was handing over awards and cheques,” she said.
She said the award had inspired her to work harder in her career.
“I am happy to receive the award and the money and for the opportunity to talk to the Prime Minister,” she said.

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