The announcement for this year’s Pulitzer Prize winners as well as the annual luncheon is going to be postponed  as some board members have been busy covering the global coronavirus outbreak, the organization announced  onTuesday.

“The announcement of Pulitzer winners in journalism and the arts will be postponed from April 20 to May 4,” the board said.

“The board includes many journalists who are on the front lines of reporting on the coronavirus pandemic,” news agency FP quoted Pulitzer Prize administrator Dana Canedy as saying.

“As they focus on this critical mission, this postponement will provide additional time to thoroughly evaluate the 2020 Pulitzer finalists, Canedy said.

She added, “More than ever, this moment highlights journalism’s mission to provide a vital public service. It also demonstrates literature and the arts’ ability to transport and uplift the human spirit during trying times. The Pulitzer Prizes will continue its more than century-long mandate to celebrate such excellence.”

The annual awards luncheon which is traditionally held in May at Columbia University is going to postponed as well for a later date. Fall reception for the winners will be announced at a later date.

The Pulitzer Prizes in journalism were first awarded in 1917 and are considered the field’s most prestigious honour in the US.