Mthethwa withdraws

Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa on Sunday withdrew
his response to comments over land expropriation allegedly made by the British
government, after discovering it was “fake news”.   

“It has now been officially communicated to me that the
reported allegation is in fact ‘fake news’, and that the British government has
not expressed any misgivings in respect of South Africa’s stance on the
expropriation of land without compensation,” Mthethwa said in a statement.

“Accordingly, I hereby revoke and recant the assertions
made in this regard.”

Mthethwa said he did so “in full recognition and
appreciation of the excellent relations and deep bonds of friendship that exist
between Britain and our republic”.

The statement said that in March this year, Mthethwa read
media reports on online platforms about the alleged statements of the British
government.

Subsequently, at a Human Rights Day commemoration, Mthethwa
“repudiated this alleged stance of the British government, asserting South
Africa’s inalienable right to self-determination as a sovereign state”,
said his ministry.

The British government subsequently issued an “official
communication” indicating it did not hold the views indicated in the
reports.

As such, Mthethwa had chosen to “unreservedly
withdraw” his response.