Writer lauds police probe
THE journalist and co-author of the controversial book, The Lost Boys of Bird Island, has welcomed an investigation into the apartheid paedophile ring involving cabinet ministers.
Chris Steyn said she hoped it would give people courage to share painful and guilty secrets for the first time in decades.
The book contains details of alleged sexual assaults of mostly coloured boys by the top brass of former National Party, including former South African Defence Force head Magnus Malan, former environmental affairs minister John Wiley and businessman Dave Allen.
The three are now dead, but another former cabinet minister who was allegedly involved is still alive.
Co-author and former policeman Mike Minnie, who knew the names of the alleged perpetrators, was found dead two weeks after the allegations were made.
The investigation into the alleged incidents, dating back to the 1980s, is being headed by Brigadier Sonja Harri, the head of the Western Cape Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit.
Harri has more than 30 years experience and has helped solve many high-profile cases.
“I know that she is working very hard on this case. People who have had dealings with her, trust her and regard her as somebody with integrity,” Steyn said.
The Foundation for Human Rights is also involved in the investigation.
Steyn said the investigation covered all the allegation contained in the book, as well as allegations made by people who had come forward with information since the book’s publication.
“I am so grateful that the police are investigating the case properly for the first time. I think the police should be given time and space to do their work – regardless of how long it takes.
“Because of the sensitivity of this investigation and the historic nature of the alleged crimes, I think it could take some time.”
Steyn said the inquiry could also give other people the courage to share their “painful and guilty secrets” for the first time in decades.
“I have already started receiving very important information on a couple of other unsolved cases. I am busy following up those leads right now,” Steyn said.
She appealed to people with knowledge of any historic case involving allegations of paedophile rings and or child trafficking to share info at email@example.com
“Don’t protect paedophiles with your silence,” she urged.