Pieter-Louis Myburgh is a multiple award-winning investigative journalist and author.
Pieter-Louis’s recent work on the Department of Health’s dodgy R150-million Digital Vibes contract booted former health minister Zweli Mkhize from his cabinet position.
In 2019, Myburgh’s acclaimed book, Gangster State (Penguin Random House), exposed former ANC Secretary General and ex Free State Premier Ace Magashule’s questionable conduct.
Among myriad issues unpacked in the book, Gangster State — in painstaking and forensic detail — revealed Magashule’s links to a controversial R255-million asbestos audit contract from the Free State’s provincial government. This led to the arrest of Magashule and other officials and businesspeople involved in the deal.
Myburgh was also part of the #GuptaLeaks team that in 2017 processed and published damning details from a huge trove of emails and documents pertaining to the shady business dealings of the Gupta family, South Africa’s most notorious state captors.
In that year, Myburgh’s first book, The Republic of Gupta (Penguin Random House), was published.
Myburgh’s first major breakthrough as an investigative journalist came in 2015, when he exposed malfeasance around a botched R3.5-billion locomotives contract at South Africa’s state-owned rail commuter entity, Prasa.
For this, Myburgh won his first of three Taco Kuiper awards, South Africa’s most prestigious accolade for investigative journalism.
Myburgh currently plies his trade for Daily Maverick’s celebrated investigations team, Scorpio.
Drawing from his work on some of the country’s biggest news developments and political scandals, Myburgh’s keynote address is an unflinching reflection on South Africa’s corruption and governance crisis.
Myburgh is also a regular guest on current affairs and news shows on some of South Africa’s major radio and television stations.
After obtaining a honours degree in journalism from Stellenbosch University in 2009, Pieter-Louis Myburgh kicked off his career as a journalist at Beeld newspaper in Johannesburg before later joining Afrikaans weekly Rapport, where in 2015 he exposed the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA) infamous multi-billion rand tall trains scandal. Myburgh has also worked at NEWS24, where he formed part of the #GuptaLeaks team that helped expose South Africa’s most notorious state captors.
Myburgh joined The Daily Maverick’s investigations team, Scorpio, in early 2019.
Sifting through heaps of records, documents and exclusive source interviews, Myburgh explores Magashule’s relationship with the notorious Gupta family and other tender moguls; investigates government projects costing billions that enriched his friends and family but failed the poor; reveals how he was about to be arrested by the Scorpions before their disbandment in the late 2000s; and exposes the methods used to keep him in power in the Free State and to secure him the post of ANC secretary-general.
Most tellingly, Myburgh pieces together a pack of leaked emails and documents to reveal shocking new details on a massive Free State government contract and Magashule’s dealings with a businessman who was gunned down in Sandton in 2017.
These files seem to lay bare the methods of a man who usually operated without leaving a trace. Gangster State is an unflinching examination of the ANC’s top leadership in the post– Jacob Zuma era, one that should lead readers to a disconcerting conclusion: When it comes to the forces of capture, South Africa is still far from safe.
Travels from: Johannesburg
Speaking fee: from R35,000 – R45,000