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Scorpio Whistleblowers Campaign

Scorpio Whistleblowers Campaign

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Scorpio is the Investigative Unit of the Daily Maverick, housed in a separate not-for-profit vehicle with Public Benefit Organisation status from SARS. This means that when you make a donation over R 2,000.00, we can send you an 18A Tax certificate.

Scorpio employs a team of dedicated investigative journalists. Arguably their most groundbreaking investigation to date is that of #GuptaLeaks which they worked on with amaBhungane and News24. Their work wasn’t just confined to revealing and reporting the #GuptaLeaks:  Scorpio was instrumental in actually getting the #GutpaLeaks whistleblowers out of the country to safety.  The Scorpio whistleblower programme now desperately requires funding as both the #GuptaLeaks whistleblowers and other whistleblowers need continued support.

Corruption is the silent assassin of society’s moral structure. If it weren’t for the brave #GuptaLeaks whistleblowers, we would not know much of the truth behind State Capture, President Zuma may not have resigned and there would be no such thing as the Zondo and Nugent Commissions. The sacrifice these people have made has, quite literally, saved South Africa.

Daily Maverick Investigations has been fighting corruption since 2012 when it first unravelled the attempted cover-up of the brutal murder of striking miners by SAPS, at Marikana. A commission of inquiry was set up as a result of Scorpio’s investigations. In October 2016, Scorpio focused on the apparent SARS ‘rogue unit’ and proved that KPMG were complicit in a ‘dirty tricks’ campaign to discredit then Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan. This investigation has not only directly led to the establishment of the Nugent Commission but also the removal of Tom Moyane as the head of SARS by President Ramaphosa.

Brief description:

Thanks to the whistleblowers and #GuptaLeaks, the Daily Maverick in June 2017, along with amaBhungane and News24, published 70 exposés into State Capture proving the extent to which the Gupta brothers controlled South African politics. Daily Maverick has committed to fundraising for the costs of relocating and securing the whistleblowers.

About the whistleblowers:

  • What happened?

The documents & files that ultimately became the #GuptaLeaks were supplied by two individuals who gave up their livelihoods when they fled the country in order to escape the threat of physical harm. Scorpio not only committed to investigating the #GuptaLeaks but also to assist with the fundraising required to enable the whistleblowers to start new lives.

  • Where?

It was imperative that whistleblowers both leave South Africa to different locations, and begin their new lives away from the reach of the forces that conspired to capture the state. Packing up and starting new lives is a difficult and expensive challenge.

  • Who?

This campaign is aimed at raising as much funding for whistleblowers for #GuptaLeaks and future investigations. The identities and location of these whistleblowers are not yet public knowledge as the security risk remains high.

  • What outcome does Daily Maverick /Scorpio want?

Support for whistleblowers is shockingly low in a country like South Africa. Scorpio has made commitments to the #GuptaLeaks whistleblowers that it intends to fulfill and create a pool of funds to assist others in future investigations

  • Why is it important to get public support for this campaign? 

Scorpio needs financial help with ongoing security and relocation of the #GuptaLeaks whistleblowers. They cannot do it alone.

To pay for future assistance that will be required assisting whistleblowers in future investigations.

The publication of further investigative articles from the #GuptaLeaks files.

Direct quote from Editor/ journalist of Daily Maverick

 “The bravery of whistleblowers and the #GuptaLeaks whistleblowers, in particular, is sometimes taken for granted. The ask of abandoning one's livelihood and family, under life threatening circumstances, is huge. And a call that not everybody would answer. Because of that, we feel it is our duty to support these and other whistleblowers who have answered the call of justice in an embattled country. We have done what we can through our channels to assist with funding but we now need the help of others who benefited from the impact of the #GuptaLeaks.” - Styli Charalambous (CEO) and Branko Brkic (Editor-in-chief) of Daily Maverick & Scorpio.

The purpose for crowdfunding:

Make Scorpio’s whistleblower programme your charity of choice. Become a champion on the backabuddy website and email your buddies to support you as you climb mountains, run, walk, cycle, parachute all in support of the whistleblower programme.

From Watergate to the #GuptaLeaks, we have seen the power of investigative journalism. In South Africa, big business shies away from supporting frontline institutions like Scorpio for fear of government retribution. We have all been affected by State Capture and we need your help. Scorpio cannot do it alone. These whistleblowers deserve our support.

How much is needed? (Target)

R 2M

How will this be used?

  • To pay for the relocation of the whistleblowers and their families.
  • To ensure their safety and to keep their identity anonymous for as long as necessary.
  • To pay for legal aid, transport and out of pocket expenses.
  • In some cases support families until new jobs are found. One of the sad consequences of being a whistleblower is that they are fired or are forced out of their jobs.

Each time we can successfully protect our whistleblowers it builds trust, encouraging other whistleblowers to come forward. 

The total amount we need to raise through back-a-buddy is R2m.

Funds will be deposited into a BackaBuddy current account and then transferred to the non-profit account of Scorpio.

How to get involved

Donate here

Fundraise on Behalf of Scorpio

Contact for more information.

Share this campaign with your networks.







  • Feb 13, 2019 - R 514.10
  • "Thank you." - Anonymous

  • Feb 01, 2019 - R 514.10
  • "We owe you." - Daphne

  • Jan 31, 2019 - R 510.00
  • "Thank you for your sacrifice; may God bless your futures." - Anonymous

  • Jan 31, 2019 - R 1 015.00
  • "To help all South Africans who have morals, integrity and courage" - ANTHONY DURELL

  • Jan 31, 2019 - R 514.10
  • "You are needed" - Michael

  • Jan 31, 2019 - R 514.10
  • "Keep up the good work." - Michael Bosazza

  • Jan 31, 2019 - R 102.82
  • "I have the greatest respect for the invaluable work that you guys do!" - Alistair

  • Jan 30, 2019 - R 205.64
  • "Keep up the good work." - Cath Blow

  • Jan 18, 2019 - USD $ 7.67
  • "We must stand for the society we want to live in! " - Douglas Hardman

  • Jan 18, 2019 - USD $ 105.20
  • "Huge appreciation for your sacrifice!" - Patriot

  • Jan 18, 2019 - USD $ 3.83
  • "Proud of you!" - Anon.

  • Jan 04, 2019 - R 2 056.40
  • "proud of your work . " - James Robertson

  • Jan 04, 2019 - R 101.50
  • "Absolute and utter respect for what you do" - Anonymous

  • Jan 01, 2019 - R 4 112.80
  • "." - Anonymous

  • Dec 28, 2018 - R 1 028.20
  • "Salute your courage" - Anonymous

  • Dec 10, 2018 - USD $ 37.05
  • "Fantastic work all of you are doing. Go well for the future." - Gordon

  • Dec 10, 2018 - USD $ 74.10
  • "Halt the plunder. " - Anon

  • Dec 10, 2018 - USD $ 37.05
  • "Keep up the excellent work" - Mike

  • Dec 10, 2018 - R 507.50
  • "The truth will set us free!" - Morne Janse van rensburg

  • Dec 10, 2018 - R 1 028.20
  • "Let the truth and facts prevail" - Laurie

  • Dec 10, 2018 - R 514.10
  • "You have my deepest admiration and respect for the level of courage you are showing. " - AF VAN DER HOVEN

  • Dec 10, 2018 - USD $ 74.10
  • "Thank you for your selfless acts of bravery!" - Anon

  • Dec 10, 2018 - R 1 028.20
  • "So admire and salute your courage. Go well!" - Barbara

  • Dec 10, 2018 - R 203.00
  • "Your contribution to our democracy is invaluable." - Anonymous

  • Dec 10, 2018 - USD $ 14.82
  • "Thank you to these courageous patriots! " - Vanessa C

  • Dec 10, 2018 - R 205.64
  • "You are so admired and appreciated." - Anon

  • Dec 04, 2018 - R 514.10
  • "We are forever indebted to you for your courage" - Anon

  • Dec 04, 2018 - R 510.00
  • "A small contribution to help" - Barbara Johannesson

  • Dec 02, 2018 - R 205.64
  • "Please keep up the good work. " - anon

  • Dec 02, 2018 - R 514.10
  • "Thank you for being true South African Citizens!" - Ruark

  • Dec 01, 2018 - USD $ 151.80
  • "Thank you for what you have done for the country" - Nicholas Labuschagne

  • Nov 30, 2018 - R 1 015.00
  • "To help the few South Africans with morals, integrity and courage" - ANTHONY DURELL

  • Nov 30, 2018 - USD $ 36.58
  • "Cant thank uou enough. Hope this helps in a small way." - Allsorts

  • Nov 30, 2018 - R 2 500.00
  • "Keep up the good work. Everybody loves a hero" - Anon

  • Nov 29, 2018 - R 205.64
  • "Good Luck!" - Carla Spies

  • Nov 29, 2018 - R 210.00
  • "All South Africans owe you brave whistle blowers. Thanks to you we may have a livable future." - Basil Dominy

  • Nov 29, 2018 - R 510.00
  • "Thank you for your integrity and courage. South Africa owes you!" - Irene

  • Nov 29, 2018 - R 500.00
  • "My small contribution to a better future for all SA's." - GP

  • Nov 29, 2018 - R 1 028.20
  • "Thank you for your courage" - Judith Hawarden

  • Nov 28, 2018 - R 203.00
  • "Thank you for your bravery." - Anon

  • Nov 28, 2018 - R 514.10
  • "We all owe you for your courage. Thank you! " - Pietbad

  • Nov 28, 2018 - R 205.64
  • "a big thank you..wish it could be more" - karin

  • Nov 27, 2018 - R 514.10
  • "To brave whistleblowers and journalists who are helping to put South Africa back on track, I salute you." - Sue Peiser

Donate to this charity


Donations to date

R 31 396.34

Fundraising target

R 2 000 000.00

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Inkululeko Media is a Non-profit investigative and social journalism outfit working with other media to further the public benefit