Stephen McGowan has come out as strong as ever, says overjoyed father

Former al-Qaeda captive Stephen McGowan has made his first public appearance since being freed earlier this month.

McGowan was abducted by al-Qaeda militants in 2011 along with Swiss national Johan Gustafson, who was released in July.

McGowan returned home last week after almost six years and was in hospital for four nights.

His father, Malcolm McGowan, says his family is ecstatic that he is finally home.

He thanked the South African government, aid group Gift of the Givers and the general public for their thoughts and prayers.

He's home now. I can't tell you how great that is.

Malcolm McGowan father of former hostage Stephen McGowan

LISTEN: How a hostage negotiator risked it all to help get Stephen McGowan home

Finally, the phone call came and they said he is 30 minutes away. We couldn't believe it!

Malcolm McGowan, father of former hostage Stephen McGowan

Malcolm says Stephen's mental state seems to be stronger than expected and adds that his son spent a lot of his time trying advance his knowledge while in captivity.

His mind seems very good.

Malcolm McGowan, father of former hostage Stephen McGowan

He went on the basis that he must come out of this strong.

Malcolm McGowan, father of former hostage Stephen McGowan

He seems to have come out as strong as ever, which I am so pleased about.

Malcolm McGowan, father of former hostage Stephen McGowan

We haven't stopped talking since, about everything that has taken place.

Malcolm McGowan, father of former hostage Stephen McGowan

There's been joyous reunion.

Malcolm McGowan, father of former hostage Stephen McGowan

Malcolm shared some of the stories told by Stephen, how he took the news of his mother's death, and efforts to integrate him into society and improve his physical well-being.

Take a listen:

WATCH: Stephen McGowan makes first public appearance


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Stephen McGowan has come out as strong as ever, says overjoyed father


702 welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the 702 community a safe and welcoming space for all.

702 reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

702 is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
'It's a fight to the death. Delegate for delegate' #ANC54

'It's a fight to the death. Delegate for delegate' #ANC54

The ANC's top six nominations are effectively head to head votes, explains political analyst Karima Brown.

#ANC54 Final Top 6 Nominees

#ANC54 Final Top 6 Nominees

The African National Congress (ANC) has announced its official nominees for the party's top leadership.

LISTEN: How a hostage negotiator risked it all to help get Stephen McGowan home

LISTEN: How a hostage negotiator risked it all to help get Stephen McGowan home

Gift of the Givers boss Imtiaz Sooliman shares the story of Mohamed Yehia Dicko, who helped ensure Stephen McGowan's safe return.

Stephen McGowan's family still hoping for his return after 2011 Mali abduction

Stephen McGowan's family still hoping for his return after 2011 Mali abduction

The Gift of The Givers and the government are both working to secure his release.

Freeing South African Stephen McGowan from Al-Qaeda

Freeing South African Stephen McGowan from Al-Qaeda

John speaks to Gift of the Givers' negotiator Anas al-Hamati about Stephen McGowan, held hostage in Mali for the past 3 years.

Govt says they’re confident about safe return of SA al-Qaeda hostage in Mali

Govt says they’re confident about safe return of SA al-Qaeda hostage in Mali

Dirco says that hope remains for Stephen McGowan, the South African who was captured by al-Qaeda in Mali nearly four years ago.

Popular articles
'ANC may split if Dlamini-Zuma is elected leader'

'ANC may split if Dlamini-Zuma is elected leader'

Political analyst Dr Somadoda Fikeni sat down with Ray White to discuss the future of the ANC.

The Steinhoff Story: from humble beginnings to billions

The Steinhoff Story: from humble beginnings to billions

Financial Mail editor Rob Rose chats to Eusebius McKaiser about how Steinhoff became the retail giant we know, before the fall.

Predictably awesome new Nando's ad reminds South Africans ‘we can fix our sh$t’

Predictably awesome new Nando's ad reminds South Africans ‘we can fix our sh$t’

Watch the Guptas pack their bags and run in Nando's inspiring new advertisement.

PSG Chair Jannie Mouton opens up (kind of) about Steinhoff

PSG Chair Jannie Mouton opens up (kind of) about Steinhoff

In 2012 Steinhoff acquired 20% of wealth manager PSG, reportedly infuriating Mouton. Bruce Whitfield interviews him.

German prosecutors probing Steinhoff CEO Markus Jooste (for accounting fraud)

German prosecutors probing Steinhoff CEO Markus Jooste (for accounting fraud)

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Steinhoff International Chairperson Christo Wiese.

So what exactly is radical economic transformation?

So what exactly is radical economic transformation?

Wits associate professor of economics Christopher Malikane speaks to Azania Mosaka about the term that is being bandied about.

3 easy questions could bag you R2000!

3 easy questions could bag you R2000!

WIN R2000! But only if you can prove you're a whiz of the MTN Biz Quiz by answering the following three questions...