Starting date: November, 2023
Deadline for applications: April 14, 2023
Location: Abuja, Nigeria
You will be the English-language correspondent based in Abuja working with the Lagos bureau chief and team covering Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country, as well as Ghana and French-speaking Benin and Togo.
Nigeria – the continent’s largest economy and top oil producer – makes up most of the bureau’s work. Growing insecurity has dominated news in recent years on several fronts: a 14-year-old jihadist insurgency and bandit militias in the predominantly Muslim north and simmering separatism in the southeast.
A tightly contested February presidential election, won by Bola Tinubu of the ruling party, was marred by rigging accusations and legal challenges from the opposition that will likely evolve into a complex political story for 2023. The emergence of a surprise third-party candidate appealing to the country’s youth – 60 percent of the population is under 25 years old — also shook up the old order.
But Nigeria offers an endless source of other stories; from the immense economic, humanitarian and social challenges — made more complex by the fallout from the war in Ukraine — to the country’s extraordinary ethnic complexity. It is also home to the world’s second largest film industry “Nollywood” and a bright artistic scene that produced stars from Grammy-winning Afrobeats icon Burna Boy to Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka.
Beyond breaking news, the Lagos bureau must contribute to AFP’s production on the themes increasingly requested by our customers, particularly in Africa: future of the planet, digital life, economy and development, health, culture and society.
Regional subjects, involving several Africa offices or even beyond, are strongly encouraged, as well as in-depth investigations. Population and climate are of particular interest in Lagos, the megalopolis expected to be the largest city in the world by 2100.
As part of the AFP team, you will work the office’s network of freelance correspondents in Nigeria, Ghana, Benin and Togo. You will ensure the reliability of information, sourcing and compliance with the agency’s editorial and ethical guidelines.
While Nigeria takes up most of the bureau’s news, Benin and Togo will require you to work with French-speaking correspondents and translate some stories written in French by the Lagos bureau.
As Abuja correspondent, you will be expected to develop sources with Nigerian government offices, the diplomatic community and international NGOs based in the capital.
You will also pitch and produce your own feature stories and analysis on key political, economic and security developments. That will require reporting trips inside Nigeria or in the other countries covered by the Lagos office.
Schedules are flexible, although often demanding depending on current events, including early and late hours and some weekends. Managers and correspondents take turns providing evening and weekend coverage for the region.
In an ever-changing media environment, the nature of the job could evolve in line with coverage demands and the requirements of an increasingly diverse client base.
- English with a strong level of French to communicate with Benin and Togo correspondents and translate French stories coming out from the Lagos bureau.
- Demonstrated strong news judgment on breaking stories to quickly sort the news from the noise.
- Patience and resilience to manage a demanding pace of news and Nigeria’s daily challenges.
- Good communication and teamwork skills vital for a small office and to co-ordinate the network of stringers and local correspondents.
- Quality writing, strong ability to find original angles and give the necessary context to make complex stories accessible.
- A keen eye for the visual and multimedia aspects to work closely with the photo, video and graphics departments.
- Awareness of security related to possible risks in coverage.
The Abuja coverage will be managed from your home office, which will be equipped with an AFP desktop and wireless service at your residence. You will coordinate with a local Abuja correspondent, photographer and a video journalist.
If you are interested, please send a cover letter and resume to email@example.com
AFP is committed to equal opportunities and greater diversity within its teams. We therefore encourage all applications in order to preserve the wealth of profiles, cultures and languages that constitute the strength of our network.