Panafrican News Agency

South Africa: Publisher withdraws tell-all Mandela book

Cape Town, South Africa (PANA) – Leading publisher Penguin Random House has withdrawn a tell-all book about former President Nelson Mandela following a public outcry.

And South Africa’s former Surgeon-General Dr Vijay Ramlakan who wrote “Mandela’s Last Years” now faces legal action.

Both Mandela’s grandson‚ Nkosi Mandla Mandela‚ and his widow, Graca Machel, say the book violates the doctor-patient confidentiality principle. Machel said she intended to sue the doctor.

“Mandela’s Last Years" provides an intimate account of the world statesman’s deteriorating health when he suffered from stomach and ulcer bleeding and a lung infection.

Ramlakan also revealed that he was accompanying the former president from his Johannesburg home to a Pretoria hospital in the dead of night when the ambulance caught fire. Thirty minutes later a backup ambulance arrived and took them to the hospital.

The executors of Nelson Mandela’s estate – Justice Dikgang Moseneke, Advocate George Bizos and Judge Themba Sangoni – announced that they planned to lay a complaint with the Health Professions Council of South Africa and the South Africa Defence Force.

Penguin said that while the book was meant to portray Mandela’s courage and strength up to the very end of his life, it respected the outcry and had withdrawn the book with immediate effect.

The Nelson Mandela Foundation said it was still studying the contents of the book, but had already identified significant factual errors.
-0- PANA CU/MA 25July2017