An insightful reveal behind the grips of undercover investigations.

By Wendy Qampi and Nosipho Gumede

Ghanaian undercover journalist, Anas Anas revealed on the second day of the African Investigative Journalism Conference 2019 at Wits University, that he works according to three principles: naming, shaming and jailing.

Anas was speaking on a panel alongside Channel 4’s investigations editor, Job Rabkin, and expert in public interest journalism and media law, Sammy Darko. In this seminar, titled Undercover investigators, Anas said, “This (session) is to remind you that undercover journalism is not a tea party.”

Having lost his colleague, Ahmed Hussein-Suale, during a targeted shooting, the undercover journalist opened the session with a reminder that this type of journalism can be very dangerous. He, however, went on to validate the risk by saying, “My journalism is (dedicated) to society – it is about my society.”

Through his work across the African continent, Anas has become famous for methodically gathering evidence, while working undercover. This evidence was then turned over to authorities, leading to the sentencing of various criminals, ranging from corrupt soccer referees to human traffickers.

In doing so, he puts himself at great risk with every project he undertakes, forcing him to hide his identity through wearing a string of vertical beads over his face and a hat.

FEATURED IMAGE: Anas Anas highlights  that “undercover journalism is not a tea party” during a session at the African Investigative Journalism Conference. Photo: Stephanie Schaffrath