Apartheid Ministers’ Paedophile Ring Buried: Accused & Author Dead. Now Publishers Withdraw Book

By Pinky Khoabane

WITH the exception of Chris Steyn, one of the authors of “The Lost Boys of Bird Island”, the story of the paedophilia ring operated by some of the key players in the National Party has been thoroughly buried. 

The Lost Boys of Bird Island, in which three former National Party (NP) Cabinet ministers were accused of sexually molesting underage boys, has been withdrawn, IOL reported a short while ago. 

Its publishers, NB Publishers, have apologised for publishing allegations implicating former finance minister Barend du Plessis.

They have also withdrawn unsold copies of both the Afrikaans and English editions of the book, and the e-book has been removed from online e-trade platforms.

Allegations of the paedophilia ring operated by apartheid-era Defence Minister Magnus Malan, Environmental Minister John Wiley and another senior minister who was was viewed as a “possible presidential candidate” to succeed PW Botha, resurfaced in a book, The Lost Boys of Bird Island, co-authored by Mark Minnie and Chris Steyn.

Malan was defence minister for 11 years (1980 – 1991) and it was under his tenure that the apartheid regime’s terror spread across the African continent.

Like two others who had intimate details of the paedophile ring, Minnie was found dead with a gunshot wound to his head shortly after the book was published, in what the police have termed a suicide.

The businessman, Allen, died on the day he was to appear in court on charges of sex with minors and possession of child pornography. Minnie had arrested him the day before and during the ride to the police station, Allen had revealed the names of the ministers involved in the paedophile ring. When Allen didn’t show up at the magistrates court for his hearing, a warrant of arrest was issued. He was found dead on the beach with a bullet wound to the forehead.

A week later, Wiley was found dead in his house with a bullet wound to his right temple. The police at the time ruled out foul play and the deaths were declared suicides. 

The book gives explosive details of how Malan, Wiley and a prominent businessman in Port Elizabeth, David Allen ferried young boys in their early teens to Bird Island in Algoa Bay near Port Elizabeth where the minors were forced to perform sexual acts on the older men. One of the boys had a gun inserted in his anus and the trigger pulled. The boy was allegedly flown in a South African Defence Force (SADF) helicopter to a government hospital where he was secretly treated in the white section of the hospital while men in suits stood guard.

The family was allegedly paid for their silence but another author, Gavin Evans, who has written about the apartheid paedophile ring, confirmed in a radio interview that he had interviewed the doctor who treated the boy and he (the doctor) confirmed he had treated the boy but would not divulge details of the injury.

Another boy who was also hospitalised with injuries to his lower body helped Minnie identify Allen as the kingpin of the ring.

Another victim, now in his 40s, broke the silence recently about his bleeding following a night as Malan’s “wife”. He was 13 at the time.

Evans also confirmed there had been many journalists who were investigating allegations of the involvement of top national party members in paedophilic rings but newspapers at the time were reluctant to publish the story. Steyn herself says her newspaper at the time, the Cape Times, was “luke warm about the story and it was watered down”.

The withdrawal of this book sends a chilling message that the apartheid machinery is alive and well. The question is whether Chris Steyn and the victims of this heinous crime, will be safe. I truly hope so. I will be updating this story later. Jacques Pauw began the onslaught on the book and challenged its veracity and that challenge has snow-balled into this – complete withdrawal by publishers. A sad day for the victims of Malan and company and a symbol of worst betrayal. 

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