Jacques Pauw, the author of The President’s Keepers, has been receiving many death threats since the controversial book, which brought to light President Jacob Zuma’s damning secrets, saw the light of the day.
Pauw, in an interview on SABC 2’s Morning Live on Tuesday told viewers that the last threat came on Monday from an anonymous caller, who vehemently warned him to “stop writing about Jacob Zuma”, else he’ll die.
“I received a call from a private number while I was speaking to Ronnie Kasrils about his book. The person said: ‘If you don’t stop writing about Jacob Zuma‚ you are going to be dead’, the investigative journalist said.
He divulged that the call was the third he has received since the much sought-after book was published and distributed across the country.
Nevertheless, a defiant Pauw said he’s not bothered about the threats because he knows threats comes with “books like this”. There are a lot of unhappy people out there. If someone threatens you‚ they are not going to do it,” he added.
Meanwhile, the State Security Agency (SSA) is considering taking an action against the veteran investigative journalist and the publishers of the book for refusing to withdraw the controversial book on President Jacob Zuma.
The agency had written Pauw and NB Publishers‚ demanding that they remove the book titled The President’s Keepers, from the shelves, else a criminal prosecution and court action would be taken against them.
But Pauw, in response, said he would print more copies instead of withdrawing the book from shelves.
“It’s too late to go to court after so many copies have been distributed. Instead of removing the book‚ we are printing more.”
NB Publishers, in reply, wrote:
“Your generalised statement that the book is ‘replete with inaccuracies’ is not backed up by a single reference to any specific statement in the book that is alleged to be inaccurate.”
Among other things, Pauw alleged in his book that the President received an R1-million a month from a security company that belongs to a crony and friend and that he failed to submit his tax returns during at least the first five years of his presidency.
It also revealed that suspected tobacco smugglers paid tens of thousands of rand every month for several years to Zuma’s son Edward for his political influence.
In the wake of the claims, the presidency, last week, simply rejected “wrongdoing by President Jacob Zuma in relation to some undeclared funds”. Nevertheless, Zuma did not deny the allegation that he had received an R1-million per month “salary” from a crony businessman for the first few months of his Presidency.