CCIJ Weekly Round-Up: July 27-31

Mayor Otu discusses being a documentary photographer and his “Water of Katampe” series. Sonja Smith talks about her journey into journalism. Andiswa Matikinca joins CCIJ on Instagram Live. Ground is gained in CCIJ’s Gaming the Lottery Project. Neha Hirve is a finalist for a prestigious award.


This week’s episode features Akwaowo “Mayor” Otu, a documentary photographer from Nigeria.  He holds a degree in Biochemistry, but has pursued photography and published a book on street photography. His intimate documentation of the lives of waterless people living in Ruga Katampe, a community mostly made of nomads in Nigeria’s capital city, Abuja, went viral after he posted the pictures on his Instagram account. The community needed N500,000 (about $1300) to get a borehole for clean drinking water.  

Mayor’s series, which he called “Water of Katampe” was acknowledged by WaterAid; he tells Ruona Meyer that the renowned international agency said it was unable to help the people of Katampe because they had exhausted their funding. Undeterred, Mayor tweeted at a Nigerian bank. 

The results were swift, and unexpected.

Listen to the entire episode here.

Transparency Talks

This week’s guest is CCIJ member and Namibian journalist Sonja Smith. She discusses why she became a journalist, how her career as a columnist at a local newspaper transformed into investigating some of Namibia’s most pressing issues, and how her passion for changing the world drives her work.

Listen to the entire episode here.
Read more from sonja:

Instagram Live

On Friday, Andiswa Matikinca joined CCIJ social media intern Jane Johnston on Instagram Live to discuss her work as an associate at Oxpeckers, Africa’s first journalistic investigation unit focusing on environmental issues.
Watch the entire video here.
Read andiswa’s work with ccij:

Gaming the Lottery Project

CCIJ South African Hub Director Raymond Joseph and his team at GroundUp have made strides in the past week in their contributions to CCIJ’s Gaming the Lottery Project. 

Millions of rands in lottery funding for mysterious music festival: R15 million paid to dormant organisation but chairman says he’s aware of the grant

Lottery bows to pressure and releases of grant details: But information on the Covid-19 relief fund is incomplete

OUTA lays fraud and racketeering complaint over Lottery grants: “NLC officials are intentionally turning a blind eye and are thus complicit and criminally liable” 

Mystery fires destroy cars on premises of Lottery corruption witnesses: Police investigating arson in both cases 

Check out more from the gaming the lottery project:

Gaming the Lottery

In other news:

Other news from CCIJ members and partner organizations

Neha hirve

CCIJ member and photographer Neha Hirve has been named a finalist in the prestigious 2020 Inge Morath competition sponsored by the Magnum Foundation. Congrats, Neha! 

Announcing the 2020 Inge Morath Award

Listen to Neha talk about her work on Transparency Talks: