Zack Ohemeng Tawiah, Ghana
Zack Tawiah first gained fame when he went undercover as a ‘doctor’ in Ghana’s Komfo Anyoke Teaching hospital and exposed that vital equipment in the hospital was broken or at risk of breaking down, with patients dying daily on its operating tables because of the faulty equipment. From there he went on to take up the plight of the Asuboi community, a rural set of villages where seventy percent of people suffer from the parasite- based river blindness disease, or onchocerciasis. Tawiah succeeded in appealing to Ghana’s health services to assist the villagers, but not before he slipped with his motorbike on the muddy narrow single-track road –in itself a reason why the villages were left to suffer alone for so long- and broke his leg. Recovered, he went on to expose large scale mismanagement at Ghana’s public transport company Metro Mass Transport. The report caused massive worker protests, the dismissal of the managing director (and his deputy) and the dissolution of the governing board. Tawiah is now investigating why still so many of his fellow citizens die of malaria, in spite of millions in donor funds given to his country to fight the disease.