Advocacy release: amaB and partners ask president to broaden grounds for parliamentary review of Secrecy Bill

The president has sent the Bill back to Parliament, concerned about its constitutionality. We applaud the decision, but ask for a more fundamental relook.

Comment: Should journalists do advocacy?

An investigative outfit with an advocacy programme may raise eyebrows. But amaBhungane has scored major wins for transparency and free speech.

‘We must bow out with pride,’ says VBS boss Matodzi

In an exclusive interview, the man charged with orchestrating the pillage that led to VBS Mutual Bank’s ruin, claimed he is the victim of powerful political forces that conspired to destroy South Africa’s only black-owned bank and pin fictitious crimes on him.

Update: High court sets aside dodgy Tshwane fuel tender, fingers company that paid Malema ‘kickbacks’

A judge has declared constitutionally invalid a tender the city awarded to three bidders citing the “irrational” adjudication that amaBhungane exposed.

Next in line: VBS’s municipal bribery network

A second wave of arrests is widely expected, this time targeting some of the municipal officials who deposited billions in VBS Mutual Bank, allegedly often in exchange for bribes. After that, the road appears headed to political bosses.

Audit reports show how VBS got its claws into municipalities

Two forensic investigations reveal that senior municipal officials bent over backwards to invest in VBS Mutual Bank. They gambled with funds meant for community upliftment – and lost.

Battleground social media: The gathering Twitter storm

When we say “same WhatsApp group” we normally mean people share a point of view. But occasionally — very occasionally — there really is a WhatsApp group quietly coordinating what people say on social media and what happens in the streets.

Update: R13bn Community Work Programme declared ‘constitutionally invalid and unlawful’

After a two-year battle, a small non-profit is victorious as the Pretoria high court sets aside all 11 contracts in government’s flagship jobs programme.

Update: State presents case against VBS accused

Seven of the eight main suspects in the pillage of VBS Mutual Bank appeared in the Palm Ridge regional court today to hear their charges and post bail.

Breaking: VBS gang finally goes down

Eight prime suspects in the pillaging and destruction of VBS Mutual Bank were rounded up in simultaneous raids this morning. This marks the beginning of a wave of prosecutions that will almost inevitably drag in a range of political operators from municipalities right up to the national level.

Government ‘punishes’ non-profits in charge of the Community Work Programme

For the last three months the department of co-operative governance and traditional affairs (Cogta) has not paid the non-profits which manage the Community Work Programme, claiming that they have failed to account for how government’s money was spent.

Advocacy comment: AmaBhungane fights for media access to courts under lockdown

Lockdown shouldn’t have to mean ‘locked out’: amaBhungane champions keeping courts accessible to the media in the time of Covid-19.

Special report: the #GuptaLeaks and more — all our stories on State Capture

AmaBhungane was tracking the Guptas long before “state capture” became part of the SA lexicon and before the #GuptaLeaks — since 2010 to be precise. See our archive of our work on the Gupta family and their relationship with former president Jacob Zuma.

Minister and chief executive both exposed by cover-up for union king-maker

Human settlements, water and sanitation minister Lindiwe Sisulu and the suspended Amatola Water chief executive Vuyo Zitumane are pointing fingers at each other over the reinstatement of an Amatola union boss who was given his job back despite being found guilty of five disciplinary charges, including not disclosing a previous conviction for armed robbery.

Eskom demands PwC pay back R95-million in consulting fees

Last year a confidential investigation delivered a damning assessment of PwC’s consulting work at Eskom, describing the fee structure as “patently unlawful and stupendously egregious”. Now Eskom has issued PwC with a R95-million letter of demand. It wants the firm to pay back fees for a consulting deal that bore all the signs of state capture.

Covid-419 scams abound

Fraudsters are using the coronavirus pandemic to target unsuspecting and desperate people online. They are doing it well, using web domains and documentation designed to look legitimate.

How the Guptas’ R9-billion loco heist went down

Not for the fainthearted: Drawing on contracts and banking data we make public for the first time, we analyse in detail how Transnet locomotive suppliers pledged R9-billion in kickbacks to the Guptas, of which at least R3.7-billion has been paid.

Locorruption reloaded: We reveal Gupta kickback contracts worth R9bn

Three years ago today amaBhungane and its #GuptaLeaks partners revealed a kickback contract between the Guptas and a locomotive manufacturer contracted to Transnet. Now we publish eight. These, and banking data, show how comprehensively the crime family pillaged SA’s state rail company – in cahoots with two Chinese manufacturers that have since merged to form the world’s biggest rail conglomerate.

Where did all the masks go?

Before Covid-19 lockdown South Africa’s personal protective equipment manufacturers exported masks like there was no tomorrow, contributing to the current shortage.

Superheroes need help too: health workers in plea for protective gear 

Health and emergency workers are on the front line of the Covid-19 war, but there have been reports that many go into battle with inadequate personal protective equipment. Nationally, hundreds have been infected. We investigated the situation on the ground in Ekurhuleni.

Battleground social media: How disinformation, propaganda and manipulation shape our online discourse

From Putin, Trump and Zuma directly to your screen – or via a myriad of intermediaries – the goal is the same: influence. In this multi-part series we explore how disinformation and propaganda flood our timelines and unmask some of the players involved.