John Grobler is a veteran investigative reporter based in Windhoek, Namibia, from where he has written for South Africa’s Mail & Guardian as well as The New York Times, The Guardian, Le Monde Diplomatique, and others.

He is a co-founder of the Forum for African Investigative Reporters.

John Grobler has been reporting on the interface between natural resource exploitation and organised crime in Africa for past 25 years. He is a past winner of several international media awards, including a CNN award for business reporting and is an Alfred Friendly Fellowship alumni.

He writes for a variety of local and international publications on general news, mining and energy, with a specific interest on the overlap between natural resource exploitation, corruption and organised crime. His interest in environmental investigations dates back to the mid-1990s.

His current work in this field was prompted by the return of rhino poaching in Namibia, which has the single-largest population of critically endangered black rhinos in the world. He won the Environment Award at the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist Awards in 2016 for his ongoing investigations into rhino poaching in Namibia.

Basic information

John Grobler
mining and energy, natural resource exploitation, corruption

Supported projects

Shades of Green Hydrogen

  • Environment

WINDHOEK - This investigation shows that Namibia will be soon becoming a major green hydrogen supplier to Europe, with about $37 million of the EU commission's funding — but the potential damage to biodiversity is high. Also the projects are being led by executives with a questionable track record.

Chinese Flying Money: the secret key to China’s international trading success

  • Corruption
  • Organised crime
  • Trafficking

WINDHOEK - The single greatest obstacle that law enforcement officials have in combatting wildlife crime and related smuggling is the lack of a money trail that can be used as evidence in court to secure convictions against the key organisers of such transactions.

Where the Cape abalone ends up: shucked abalone shells on top of a non-descript building in New Territories, Hong Kong, where almost all abalone smuggled from Africa ends up as part of the fei qian chain before being smuggled into Mainland China.

Our Game

  • Corruption
  • Politics

The internal financial structures of several African countries' dominant political parties that are performing as corporatised multinationals in monopolised state power structures: Angola’s MPLA, Zimbabwe's ZANU, and Namibia’s SWAPO.