Dutch writer Adriaan van Dis claims he never made the statements in an interview with Italian daily La Stampa.for which he was strongly criticized. In a blog published on Africa is a Country (AIAC) last week, Donata Columbro quotes from the interview: ‘The dismantling of the system of segregation has created a new privileged class of wealthy black people, as scared as white people are of the diffused criminality among the poorest of the country’, says van Dis. According to Columbro the writer also stated that ‘the country which, in the 1990s, represented hope for justice and redemption for the oppressed of the world has ‘Africanized’ itself more and more in the last 20 years.’ Commenting on the Pistorius murder case, van Dis says: ‘The country is dominated by fear, people, black and white, live in terror.’ Columbro concludes: ‘Scratch, scratch the Europeanist, and you’ll find the colonialist.’
The La Stampa interview was published after the launch of the Italian translation of Tikkop, van Dis’ latest book.
In his response Van Dis writes that ‘hardly any quote in my telephone interview with La Stampa is correct. I didn’t read the interview before it was published nor did I have the opportunity to correct the article. The Italian journalist had no idea about the present situation in South Africa. Everybody who knows my work knows where I stand in matters concerning South Africa. (…) I apologise for the wrong impression.’