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Rappler’s Patricia Evangelista wins SOPA award for drug war story
Rappler’s Patricia Evangelista wins SOPA award for drug war story
Rappler journalist Patricia Evangelista wins the SOPA 2017 Awards for Editorial Excellence in Feature Writing for coverage of the drug war

MANILA, Philippines – Rappler journalist Patricia Evangelista won the SOPA 2017 Awards for Editorial Excellence.

Evangelista’s “In the Name of the Father” won for Excellence in Feature Writing as “far and away, the best of this category.”

“This multilevel story seizes the attention of the reader and doesn’t let get until the very end,” said judges in their comments. The story “reflects the dedicated work of the reporter to catalogue and put a human face on Duterte’s drug war.” 

The piece is part of Rappler’s “Impunity” series, featuring coverage by Evangelista and Magnum Foundation photographer Carlo Gabuco from the frontlines of the government’s deadly campaign against drugs. The series recently won the Human Rights Press Awards for Multimedia Reporting.

“In the Name of the Father,” a narrative essay reporting six months of drug war killings published in December 2016, features Gabuco’s photos and cinematography, and was designed by Dominic Go with video editing by filmmaker Paolo Villaluna.

“This was a compelling collection of stories,” added SOPA, “creatively organized, with layers of story telling, all extremely well written in a manner that draws the reader in deeper and deeper. The use of video and photography was excellent, adding to the written narrative and giving it more emotional weight.”

Winners were announced on June 15 at the annual SOPA award ceremony at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre. The SOPA awards is divided into three competitive sections. Group A, for global media, Group B, for regional media, and Group C for Chinese-language pieces. 

Several other media groups covering the drug war also won in a variety of categories:

Organized by Hong Kong-based non-for-profit organization Society of Publishers in Asia (SOPA), the awards shortlisted the finalists from more than 750 English or Chinese-language entries submitted by media across the region.

Now on their 19th year, the awards are widely considered the most prestigious in the Asia Pacific publishing industry and a world-class benchmark of journalistic best practice.

Participating media competed in 17 categories and entries were assessed by a judging panel of more than 100 media professionals, including journalists, editors and columnists from some of the region’s most influential publications, along with academics from a number of Asia’s leading journalism schools. –


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