By: Seringe ST Touray
In November 2023, Reporters Without Borders Germany launched a new fellowship program for journalists facing imminent threats, now called the Deyda Hydara Scholarship.
Named after the murdered Gambian journalist, the program provides temporary protection for media professionals who are no longer safe in their home country due to targeted threats.
In collaboration with organizations like Protect Defenders and initiatives such as the Elisabeth-Selbert-Initiative and Hannah-Ahrendt-Initiative, Reporters Without Borders aims to offer a safe environment for journalists to reassess their career goals, undergo safety training, and receive support for traumatic experiences.
Deyda Hydara, a journalist known for his criticism of the former Gambian dictatorial regime, was murdered in 2004, and his son, Baba Hydara, expressed excitement about renaming the fellowship program in his father’s honor.
The Deyda Hydara Scholarship replaces the “Emergency Assistance Fellowship” program, which has been awarded since 2016, and nominations are made through Reporters Without Borders regional programs.
“My mum, sisters and brothers, we are very excited by this opportunity to rename this fellowship programme after our father,” said Baba Hydara. “We believe that Reporters Without Borders’ work goes a long way in helping journalists and their families all over the world feel supported and appreciated while doing the most difficult and dangerous work at times…We are proud, honored and very humbled by this great gesture,” he added.