The Station, 63 Peter Place, Bryanston, Johannesburg, 2169

Citation for Nat Nakasa Award Winner 2018

Moradisi, Mme Gladys Nakasa, lelapa lotlhe la kwa Nakasa, bomma le borra,

Ke rumilwe ke baatlhudi ba Nat Nakasa Award ngwaga o, ebong Crystal
Orderson, Peter Sullivan, Simphiwe Sesanti, le nna – go baa lefoko.

Ba nthumile gore ke le itsise gore…
The winner of the Nat Nakasa Award this year has fallen a few times in this
precarious business of publishing, and each time he got up, brushed away the
dust from his knees and hands and continued undeterred, first in his native
Yugoslavia and then in this, his adopted home.

In South Africa, before he embarked on his current project, two magazines he
edited collapsed. This tenacity alone already put him in line to win this
prestigious award.

But in his leadership of his publication in the past year, he set a precedent
that the judges can’t ignore…
A cache of emails – a cache that defined the South African story in the last
year – landed on his lap. If he were just another ordinary journalist, he would
have heard the words SCOOP! and EXCLUSIVE! dancing in his head. But he
was extraordinary and thus did two remarkable things: one, he realised this
was not a story his publication could hoard – it belonged to South Africa; and
two, he had to protect his sources.

He arranged for the safety of the sources and he put together a team from his
own publication, some journalists from the unique South African investigative
journalism centre AmaBhungane, and from his rivals, Media24, to give us the
#GuptaLeaks, the journalism that brought down the Gupta family and their
mentor, ex-President Jacob Zuma.

One of the letters supporting his nominations and that of his team stated:
“The work of a brave and courageous bunch of journalists showed how the
Guptas were getting massive kickbacks on contracts with parastatals; it exposed
how public departments and private entities helped boost the earnings of this
elusive family. As a result some journalists faced a virulent social media
campaign of “fake news” and denigration, which also spilled over into acts of

The Nat Nakasa Award is recognition of courageous and brave journalism by a media practitioner – journalist, editor, manager or owner – who has:

  • Shown integrity and reported fearlessly;
  • Displayed a commitment to serve the people of South Africa;
  • Tenaciously striven to maintain a publication or other medium despite
    insurmountable obstacles;
  • Resisted any censorship; and
  • Shown courage in making information available to the SA public.

This year we had the largest number of nominations ever and the quality of the entries was outstanding, and it was out of this cream of South Africa journalism
that we selected the winner of the Nat Nakasa Award 2018.

And in doing so, the judges also acknowledge the committed and groundbreaking
work of the entire #GuptaLeaks team – Pauli van Wyk, Lester Freamon, Adriaan
Basson, Richard Poplak, Adi Eyal, Micah Reddy, Susan Comrie, Angelique
Serrao, Stefaans Brummer, Antoinette Muller, Marianne Thamm, Sam Sole,
Tabelo Timse, Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Craig McKune, Lionel Faull, Rebecca Davis
and Sally Evans.

The Nat Nakasa Award for 2018 goes to Branko Brkic, editor of the online
publication Daily Maverick.