for the Journalists of Southern Africa
A South African journalist accepted into the Nieman Fellowship program at Harvard University has quit his job as a television field producer there because his employer would not let him accept the fellowship, according to a report from the Maynard Institute's Journal-isms.
The journalist, Beauregard Lucian Tromp, told Journal-isms by phone: "They told me they couldn't let me go. After a lot of soul searching, I decided the Nieman Fellowship is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I decided to resign."
South Africa has sent a journalist to the Nieman program for 51 years, the only country outside of the United States to do so consistently. The selection is made by South African graduates of the program, known as the Nieman Society of Southern Africa. Tromp's selection was announced in Cambridge, Mass., on Thursday along with those of the 23 other U.S. and international fellows.
Tim Du Plessis, chair of the Nieman Fund Trust of Southern Africa, which raises funds for the fellowship, told Journal-isms by telephone that the last time a South African journalist was denied permission to accept the fellowship was in 1965, when the apartheid government would not grant a passport to Ndazana Nathaniel Nakasa, an assistant editor of Drum magazine, founder of the Classic literary magazine and columnist for the Rand Daily Mail.