Ruperts, Mike Brown and the “forged” Mandela book

Billionaire Johann Rupert and his wife saw the original manuscript of Mandela with Love by Jan Willem (JV) Esterhuyse, which was allegedly later forged by Tyne Doyle, whose real name is Tanya.

In the second of a four-part series, UnCensored brings you the explosive background to The Children’s Mandela; a book on the views of South African children on the late former President Nelson Mandela way back in 1998.


You can read the first part here.


In correspondence between Esterhuyse’s brother, Niel, and Peter Baker, the latter organised for the Ruperts to see the manuscript in around 2002 or 2003 with a view of having them assist in having it published.

Baker, who was among JV’s best friends, had spoken to Gaynor Rupert, Johann’s wife, and she had shown an interest in the book and had promised to publish it if her publisher was keen to do so.

Baker and Niel met one evening and the former took the manuscript and delivered it to the Ruperts. It stayed at their home for a week or two before Gaynor and her publisher decided not to publish it.

Fast forward to 2010 when Nedbank sponsors a carbon copy of Esterhuyse’s manuscript, The Children’s Mandela by Doyle, twelve years after his death. The two were live-in lovers when the book project was first conceived in the late 1990’s. He took his life in a London flat where he had gone to raise funds for the book. Ironically, Doyle didn’t seem too fond of the iconic statesman. A graphic found on her computer shows Madiba in a sports car and the text: Jou “Ma se Poes” and a middle finger.

In January 2011 Niel on behalf of his mother, wrote a letter to Nedbank’s CEO Mike Brown in which he tables the background to the “stolen copy of my brother’s book” and demanded that among others, it be withdrawn from circulation. Among the evidence offered as proof that the manuscript The Children’s Mandela was a copy of Mandela with Love, the family provided among others, the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund (NMCF) endorsement letter and contract by which the author and Foundation would share in a 60/40 of the profits. They also presented JV’s contract with the BBC Worldwide. Apart from the extensive information presented to Nedbank, the family had a meeting with forensic expert, Dr David Klatsow. He was damning in response to what he had discovered in this case. He described the dispute around the book by Doyle as symptomatic of society’s “breakdown in moral fibre” and “a sad indictment on all the players involved in a book whose content was clearly lifted from the original manuscript by JV Esterhyse’s “Mandela with Love”.

Describing it as “identical, with slight modifications”, Klatsow said it was scientifically impossible that Doyle’s book was original in both concept and content. He said the “style, artwork, order and content of the letters from the pupils were lifted from Esterhyse’s book”.

Brown has never responded to the Esterhuyse family.

The company said it had entered into an agreement with the publisher of “The Children’s Mandela” and its rights and obligations were limited.”

“We believe we have acted in good faith in dealings with all parties involved in this dispute.  However, our actions are restricted in instances where there still appears to be a clear dispute of fact between parties and where it has not been brought before a court of law for determination.”

“Nedbank is, in fact, precluded from performing any of the actions

that would constitute infringement of copyright as envisaged by

Section 23 of the Copyright Act”.


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  1. Hmm is anyone else having problems with the images on this blog loading? I’m trying to determine if its a problem on my end or if it’s the blog. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

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