‘Lost Boys of Bird Island’ pulled for good

By ERNEST MABUZA

NB Publishers on Friday announced it had withdrawn the book The Lost Boys of Bird Island and its Afrikaans version from circulation, in both print and digital formats.

The publisher said it took this decision after weighing up a number of factors.

In March, the publisher announced it had withdrawn unsold copies of both the Afrikaans and English book — which claimed to have exposed a paedophile ring allegedly run by apartheid-era politicians.

The book named three ministers, two of whom, Magnus Malan and John Wiley, have since died.

In March, the publishers conceded in a statement that the surviving minister, Barend du Plessis, could have been erroneously linked to the book.

After the announcement in March, lawyers for the three apartheid-era ministers said the book was nothing but a fabrication and a web of lies woven by its co-authors, Mark Minnie and Chris Steyn.

Minnie killed himself at a friend’s farm in Port Elizabeth in 2018.

In its announcement on Friday, NB said it regretted and sincerely apologised for the emotional harm that the publication of the book may have caused the Malan and Wiley families.

“Furthermore, the book will not be reprinted,” the publisher said.

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