'Gangster State' author says book launch chaos shows ANC intellectualism is gone

Author Pieter-Louis Myburgh says the disruption of his book launch at Exclusive Books in Sandton on Tuesday evening demonstrates the African national Congress's (ANC's) departure from its history of intellectualism.

The launch of Myburgh’s book Gangster State: Unraveling Ace Magashule's Web of Capture was forced to shut down after a group of disgruntled ANC supporters disrupting proceedings.

Read: Small crowd rampages at launch of 'Gangster State'

The group stormed the venue, ripping apart books and chanting songs in support of ANC secretary-general Magashule.

Speaking to Eusebius McKaiser on 702, Myburgh says he feels frustrated by the disruption because critics could have raised their objections about the book during the question-and-answer session at the event.

Some of the books were torn up and other property may have been damaged. It escalated quickly and led to the disruption of the discussion of the book.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Investigative journalist and author of 'Gangster State'

Also read: 'There will be plenty of books, how we get them? Don't worry'- ANCYL Free State

This is not the first time that the investigative journalist has been threatened or intimidated for exposing corruption.

He will not be deterred and says his book tour will go on as scheduled, perhaps with extra security going forward.

Read more: Mbalula deflects question on whether corruption-accused Magashule is ethical

Meanwhile, the group of ANC supporter says they are not done and will be burning copies of the book in Mangaung on Monday.

Media expert William Bird says there is growing antagonism from political parties towards the media in the build-up to elections.

He describes the act of tearing up the book and proposed plans to burn the book as censorship.

It's profoundly worrying indicator for our democracy.

William Bird, Director - Media Monitoring Africa

Listen to the in-depth discussion on The Eusebius McKaiser Show:


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