Prince Mashele apologises for lying about Mashaba book

Political analyst and author Prince Mashele has issued a public apology for providing misleading information about the funding of ActionSA leader Herman Mashaba’s book titled The Outsider: The Unauthorised Biography of Herman Mashaba.

The apology follows recent revelations that Mashaba had indeed financed the “unauthorised” biography, contrary to earlier statements made by Mashele.

The controversy came to light after the Sunday Times published an article over the weekend, disclosing that Mashaba had secretly agreed to provide Mashele with a staggering sum of R12.5-million to support the research for the book in 2019.

The revelation was made by ActionSA member and researcher Brutus Malada, who alleged that he had been paid R3-million for his contribution to the project.

Malada accused Mashele of deceiving the public by concealing Mashaba’s financial involvement from the book’s publisher, Jonathan Ball.

Addressing the matter in a concise statement released on Wednesday, Mashele expressed sincere remorse for his role in the ensuing controversy and the subsequent withdrawal of the book.

While acknowledging that he was bound by a non-disclosure agreement, Mashele admitted that his previous statement denying Mashaba’s funding role had been false. He extended his apologies to Mashaba, who, he stated, had been unfairly implicated in the controversy through no fault of his own.

Said Mashele: “I would like to offer a sincere and unreserved apology for my part in the controversy which resulted in the withdrawal of my book, The Outsider: The Unauthorised Biography of Herman Mashaba.

“While I was bound by a non-disclosure obligation, I accept that I should not have stated that Mr. Herman Mashaba had no role to play in the funding of the book. The correct fact is that the research that led to the production of the book was financed through a funding agreement with Mr. Mashaba, to whom I am eternally grateful.

“I offer my apology to Mr Mashaba who has since been associated with the controversy due to no fault of his own.”

Furthermore, Mashele also offered apologies to Professor JJ Tabane, to whom he had provided incorrect information during an interview regarding Mashaba’s involvement in the book’s financing.

Mashele expressed his appreciation for the professionalism displayed by Jonathan Ball Publishers, despite their disapproval of his failure to disclose the funding arrangement. He acknowledged that the manuscript submitted to the publishers had withstood scrutiny.

“I admit that the answer I gave to Professor JJ Tabane, which stated that Mr. Mashaba had no role in the funding of the book, was incorrect. I apologise to Professor Tabane and the public in this regard.

“I would also like to thank Jonathan Ball Publishers since, despite their disapproval of my non-disclosure about the funding, they still maintained that ‘The manuscript that was submitted to us stood up to scrutiny…’ I appreciate the publishers’ professionalism in my interaction with them,” he added.

Also read: ActionSA Clarifies Stance on Controversial Biography

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