25 March 2023 | 01:39 PM

Watch: Cherese Thakur explains the Steinhoff win

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AmaBhungane advocacy coordinator Cherese Thakur talks on the recent win by amaBhungane and Tiso Blackstar in the Western Cape High Court to gain access to a PwC report commissioned by embattled retailer Steinhoff. The report will shed light on the alleged irregularities giving rise to a precipitous drop in the company’s share price in December 2017.

The decision also strikes a blow against the argument that exemptions from providing such information, such a legal privilege, can be invoked merely on the say-so of the requestee. A sound factual basis must be established.

The impact of this decision is that legitimate requests for access to information from, for example, companies mired in scandal, cannot be ignored or deflected by briefing attorneys to do their bidding.

It means that just because a document may be marked “legally privileged” does not make it necessarily so.

“It has to be emphasised that this first victory is really important, it sets the tone for any further potential litigation and when we look at the actual content of the judgment it is very strong in favour of access to information in this case,” said Thakur

Read full article on the case here

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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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