25 March 2023 | 03:57 AM

Watch: amaBhungane’s AIJC masterclass


Watch amaBhungane team members take us through their investigative processes during this year’s African Investigative Journalism Conference (AIJC) — an annual conference organised by Wits University’s department of journalism.

AmaBhungane investigators Dewald van Rensburg, Stefaans Brümmer, Susan Comrie and Micah Reddy offer a rare glimpse behind the scenes into the process of investigating corruption at both state and private sector levels.

AmaB’s advocacy coordinator Cherese Thakur gives a run through of how to use PAIA and the Companies Act to get records and court documents from a South Africa perspective.

Susan Comrie takes us through her investigations of the private sector, noting: “There’s a common misconception that we, at amaB, only focus on the State. But that is technically not true. we focus on the intersection between the state and the private sector: it is really about where public money moves into private hands and the kinds of abuse that happens.” Susan shows us her go-to tools to help dig deeper.

Dewald van Rensburg gives us a case study using his work on Iqbal Survé illustrating how to do an investigation with only publicly available information and tools.

Micah Reddy gives “a lightning tour” on how amaBhungane combined tender documents, forensic reports and on-the-ground reporting to uncover EFF-linked corruption and “bust their alibi”.

AmaBhungane investigator and managing partner Stefaans Brümmer gives a lesson on following the money, using his investigation that exposed how Transnet locomotive suppliers pledged R9-billion in kickbacks to the Guptas in the context of state capture.

Brümmer explains, “State capture is the process by which private interests get their hands on the levers of state power.”

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Aisha Abdool Karim

Aisha is a freelance science and health reporter. She is joining the amaB team to work on a project about water and sanitation. Aisha’s passion for long-form narrative and investigative journalism was sparked while doing her master’s degree at Columbia University in New York. After graduating in 2018, she returned to South Africa and began working as a general beat reporter for the Daily Maverick. Aisha joined the Bhekisisa Centre for Health Journalism in 2020 to focus on science reporting. During her time there, she covered the COVID-19 pandemic extensively — from fact-checking harmful medical misinformation to unpacking the science behind vaccine development. Aisha’s special interests include analysing health systems and in-depth coverage of public health issues and infectious diseases. She also loves spreadsheets and digging through data.

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