“In response to the alleged interview with Ms Nadira Naipul, published initially in the London Evening Standard and then widely picked up by media across the world, I would like to state categorically:
I did not give Ms Naipaul an interview. It is therefore not necessary for me to respond in any detail to the contents of a fabricated interview.
I will in the coming days deal with what I see as an inexplicable attempt to undermine the unity of my family, the legacy of Nelson Mandela and the high regard with which the name Mandela is held here and across the globe,” she said in a statement on Friday.
Winnie was quoted by the paper saying South Africa’s first democratically elected president, who is also her ex-husband, had become a “corporate foundation” who was being “wheeled out to collect the money”.
The paper also said Winnie also called Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu a “cretin”, in the interview with Nadira Naipaul, who visited her with her husband, the writer VS Naipaul, in Soweto.
“I have already had the opportunity to speak to Bishop Tutu, who was also in Atlanta, USA where I addressed a meeting. I intend speaking with Madiba and Graca, as I regularly do. I will also have to deal with the hurt caused to my children and grandchildren by the unwarranted and untrue statements about their private lives. I appreciate the fact that my organisation the ANC decided to hear my “side” before making any judgements,” she said.