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Taco Kuiper winners announced

- By Wits University

A story which exposed how members of the teachers’ union sell jobs has won the 9th Taco Kuiper Award – and R200 000 in prize money – for outstanding investigative journalism by South African media.

At the awards ceremony held today, Friday, 27 March 2015 in Johannesburg, the convenor of the judging panel, Caxton Professor of Journalism and Media Studies at Wits University, Anton Harber, described the winning entry, How Sadtu decimates our education system, one school at a time, from Sipho Masondo and Paddy Harper from City Press as:

“A national scandal of great importance to our education system, giving a detailed account and examples from all over the country, of how members of the teachers’ union sells key posts in schools.

“It is important work, brilliantly executed and carried through to the full. We can only hope that the story and this award will help the Minister of Education to take strong action.” 

The runner up was Miners Shot Down, a feature length documentary film about Marikana from Rehad Desai and Anita Khanna, who won R100 000 in prize money. 

“This film pieces together a view of what happened on that fateful August day, presenting a narrative which challenges the official view and makes for riveting viewing,” said Harber. Listen to Harber. Read Harber's address

He added that the shortlist of entries were all examples of excellence in investigative reporting. “At a time when all the institutions of accountability are taking the strain, it is more important than ever that we have reporters who probe, question, expose, uncover and rake the muck that flows beneath the surface of our complex and rich society.”

Nick Davies, author of Hack Attack and Flat Earth News, and an investigative journalist for the Guardian, London, delivered the keynote address at the event. Listen to Davies

For more information contact Margaret Renn on (011) 717-4043/076 060 4815 or email

About Taco Kuiper

Taco Kuiper was a highly successful South African publisher who left a significant part of his estate to the promotion of investigative journalism.  He believed that exposing matters of public concern which those scrutinized would not want to see disclosed was an important enterprise. It was for this reason that Kuiper, shortly before his death in September 2004, set up a fund for investigative journalism within The Valley Trust. The Trust has partnered with the Wits Journalism Programme to administer the Taco Kuiper Award.