GHANA: NAPOLEON ATO KITTOE WINS BROADCAST JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR AT GHANA LEADERSHIP AWARDS 2020

By: Richard Fiebor/www.africanakua.com, Ghana.

Senior Ghanaian journalist, Napoleon Ato Kittoe, has been adjudged Broadcast Journalist of the Year at the prestigious Ghana Leadership Awards (GLA) 2020, which was held in Accra.

The theme for this year’s awards scheme was: “Celebrating Our Heroes in a Peaceful Ghana, One People Working Together”.

The Ghana Leadership Awards seeks to celebrate and recognize most outstanding and exemplary leadership that positively impacts the development of Ghana and Africa. The annual event showcases the highest level of leaders representing the Diplomatic, Business, Government, Academia, Philanthropic, Media, Celebrity, the Clergy and Social Sector players among others.

Some other recipients of awards out of a total of 40 awards of different categories at the program included: Hon Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, Majority Leader and Minister of Parliamentary Affairs who is also the Member of Parliament for Suame, Hon Haruna Iddrisu, Minority Leader and MP for Tamale South, Mr Arafat Sulemana Abdulai, CEO of Zongo Development Fund (ZoDF ) for being the Best CEO for championing poverty alleviation and Job Creation through the ZoDF, Hon Dr Otiko Afisah Djaba, Former Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection and Chairperson of Henry Djaba Foundation, Dr Osei Kwame Despite, CEO of Despite Group of Companies for being the Best Entrepreneur, Dr Ernest Ofori Sarpong, CEO of Special Investment Ltd also received Award as CEO of the Best Manufacturing company of the year, and Mr Ibrahim Oppong Kwarteng CEO of Crime Check Foundation.

In his welcome address, President of the Awards Scheme, Rev Prof Emmanuel Yaw Nash commended the award recipients for their hard work and immense contribution towards the development of the country.

He also admonished the youth to refrain from acts of violence before, during and after the December 7 election.

PROFILE OF NAPOLEON ATO KITTOE

Background:

Napoleon Danful Ato Kwamena Kittoe Junior is his full name. In career, the name is shredded to Napoleon Ato Kittoe. He is the last born of his parents; father hailed from Gomua Kumasi in Central region of Ghana and mother from Big Ada in Greater Accra region of Ghana.

He had secondary school education at Asante Effiduase Secondary Commercial school (Effisco) and Osei Kyeretwie Secondary School in Kumasi (Okess), where he did O and A level exams. He then moved to Ghana Institute of Journalism in 1994 to pursue Journalism, specializing in sports reporting.

In 1997, he was employed by the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation. He had already become a sports fanatic in his preteens, memorizing footballers names to run commentary. He often argued about matches holding brief for Accra Hearts of Oak.

In the broader picture he is a born journalist as he indulged news reading at relatively young age, mimicking experienced readers like Daniel Adjei, Kwabena Nimo, Dan Eshun, Barima Ohemeng Nkwatia etc of GBC.

Napoleon was a course assistant to Mark Laity, a former BBC Defence Correspondent who doubled as advisor to NATO’s military Commander at the time. It was under Mr Laity’s direction that a training course on spokesmanship in Peacekeeping operations was held. In the period between 2004 and 2007 at Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre in Accra, Ghana, saw veteran journalist Kwaku Sakyi Addo as the other facilitator in radio and Napoleon in TV.

Napoleon Ato Kittoe is a trained FIFA Commentator under the tutelage of a FIFA Chief Commentator Christopher John Helm (2008). He has also pursued short courses at Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (2014) and was member of BBC Media Leaders event held in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2019 and Accra Ghana in 2020.

Napoleon Ato Kittoe has attended several election coverage courses run by VOA, CNN and the Commonwealth Broadcasters Association, CBA. He had a stint of training in television documentary production under guidance of Prof. Erik Knudsen of University of Central Lancashire of United Kingdom.

The course was organised by Ghana Broadcasting Corporation in 2007 in Accra, Ghana. He broke into ranks of a team of senior reporters and became a regular Ghana Television reporter from the Ghanaian presidency from 1998 to 2001. He became presidency reporter again from 2009 to 2016. He was also GTV’s permanent reporter at the National Reconciliation Commission in 2001/2. He was once Head of News and Current Affairs at Metro TV, Ghana (2005) at which he was assigned to international assignments involving His Royal Majesty, the King of Ashanti Kingdom of Ghana. He travelled with him to South Africa, Libya and Nigeria, first with Metro TV and subsequently with GTV.

Awards:

Napoleon has been recipient of 5 awards, the recent one being the Ghana Leadership Awards in which he was adjudged Broadcast Journalist of the Year 2020.

In 1999, he received Ghana Journalists Association award as best in television feature/ 2002 and 2006, best in environmental news reporting awarded by Ghana’s Ministry of Environment and Science.

The other two awards were honoraries given by the Tijaniyya Muslim Council of Ghana (2014 and 2019). In the 17th February 2014 edition of Ghana’s popular newspaper, the Daily Graphic, the “voice from afar” Columnist, K.B. Asante commended Napoleon Ato Kittoe and BBC’s Komla Dumor for career excellence. (Google, “Do We Have a National Language by K.B Asante”).

The author was the Secretary to Ghana’s President, Dr Kwame Nkrumah, and served as government advisor, ambassador and minister of state in subsequent governments in Ghana. Napoleon who was first producer of GTV sponsored sports segment of the bulletin, is currently science correspondent and producer/presenter of Farmers Weekly programme. He is also a regular feature in sports reporting for online portal “www.Africanakua.com“.

Napoleon Ato Kittoe (Right) in a pose with Colombian 1990 Soccer World Cup Hero, Carlos Veldarrama (Left) in Bogota.

Work as a Media Practitioner:

Napoleon who is naturally a laid back figure, has been steered to international focus by career. He has travelled to several countries in all continents in the course of duty, and in 2007 he became part of the Africa Media Journey to China, and again selected by the Chinese Mission in Ghana to cover the National Parade in Beijing in 2009. He has travelled to Nigeria most.

He has covered Écowas, AU, UN, Commonwealth, World Économic Forum, Africa-South America summit, Latin America Ministerial Summit, EU-Africa Summit, Gulf-Africa Economic Cooperation Summit, at various world capitals. If you went to YouTube, check out the following documentaries under the titles, “csirani”, “napobimoba”, “African Presidential Palaces by Napoleon Ato Kittoe”, “Energy in Ghana by Napoleon Ato Kittoe”, “forigg”, among others.

Napoleon Ato Kittoe with Pope Francis at the Vatican

His areas of expertise are sports and international affairs writing. He is also a powerful voicer in electronic media, a regular on GTV and occasionally as presenter of news commentary on Radio Ghana.

The 16th American President Abraham Lincoln is his life’s role model, following Lincoln’s ability to face vicissitudes in private and public lives. In journalism, he is enchanted by late Merari Alomele of the Weekly Spectator newspaper in Ghana, for his comic style of writing.

Other career role models are Messrs Kwesi Pratt, ABA Fuseini, Gifty Affenyi Dadzie, Kwabena Yeboah, Cynthia Prah, Ben Dotsei Malor and CNN’s Nic Robertson. As a sports journalist, Napoleon Ato Kittoe looks out for great potentials.

In football, Napoleon thinks the greatest are the trio of Ronaldinho of Brazil, Diego Maradona of Argentina and Mohammed Ahmed Polo of Ghana. Napoleon Ato Kittoe escaped narrowly, but got injured in the 20th August 2015 road accident of the presidential press corps. Samuel Nuamah of Ghanaian Times newspaper who died  on the spot, sat by him in that ill-fated journey from Ho to Accra. Napoleon was on board a presidential flight in December 2010 that made emergency landing in the Libyan desert city of Cufra. The plane was heading Burkina Faso from Cairo, Egypt.

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