Ugandan journalist Butagira was one of 27 journalists from African countries on the team of 370 journalists from 76 countries that reviewed the records
The Panama Papers is an unprecedented investigation that reveals the offshore links of some of the globe’s most prominent figures.
The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, together with the German newspaper Suddeutsche Zeitung and more than 100 other media partners, spent a year sifting through 11.5 million leaked files to expose the offshore holdings of world political leaders, links to global scandals, and details of the hidden financial dealings of fraudsters, drug traffickers, billionaires, celebrities, sports stars and more.
The trove of documents is likely the biggest leak of inside information in history. It includes nearly 40 years of data from a little-known but powerful law firm based in Panama.
That firm, Mossack Fonseca, has offices in more than 35 locations around the globe, and is one of the world’s top creators of shell companies, corporate structures that can be used to hide ownership of assets.
ICIJ’s analysis of the leaked records revealed information on more than 214,000 offshore companies connected to people in more than 200 countries and territories. The data includes emails, financial spreadsheets, passports and corporate records revealing the secret owners of bank accounts and companies in 21 offshore jurisdictions, including Nevada, Hong Kong and the British Virgin Islands.
ICIJ’s data and research unit indexed, organised and analyzed the 2.6 terabytes of data that make up the leak, using collaborative platforms to communicate and share documents with journalists working in 25 languages in nearly 80 countries.
These 27 journalists from African countries were part of the team of 370 journalists from 76 countries that reviewed the records.
Ugandan representative Tabu Butagira, who is an Associate Editor at the Daily Monitor newspaper, told The Independent each journalist had two months to comb the documents and find what was relevant to their countries.
“There were confidentiality clauses and there was an agreed timeline on when to release the documents,” he said.
READ FULL STORY HERE: Uganda in biggest tax evasion story