Shades of Difference
 
When the biography 'Shades of Difference: Mac Maharaj and the Struggle for South Africa' by historian and scholar Professor Padraig O'Malley of the University of Massachusetts (Boston) was published in 2007 by Penguin, it received rave reviews both in the United States and South Africa - as might be expected of a book for which Nelson Mandela had penned a substantial foreword.
In the decade after 1999, when President Mandela had given up the presidency and President Mbeki had succeeded him, the political climate against Mac Maharaj had become virulently poisoned by malicious rumours against him spread under Mbeki's administration.

President Mandela's approach to this matter is aired in his foreword to O'Malley's biography, a foreword he ends with the words "I respect Mac, and I love him. I call him Ngquphephe, after a one-eyed hero in a Xhosa folktale." (Mac has one eye).

The bitter hostility of President Thabo Mbeki towards Mac Maharaj, analysed in Professor O'Malley's book, is also referred to in Dancing to a Different Rhythm by Zarina Maharaj, as going back to long before Mbeki became the President to succeed Mandela.

This hostility was openly expressed when President, Mbeki appointed the Hefer Commission in 2003 to investigate Mac, a commission whose terms of reference he changed THREE TIMES as it proceeded with its work, so unsure was he of what Mac was to be investigated for. See Abuse of Power  )

In 2008 Mbeki was unceremoniously kicked out as President by his own party, the ANC, for his 'Machiavellian' conduct/decisions that were apparently symptoms of a deep paranoia: like his decision to publicise his false belief that three of his cabinet comrades were planning topple him as President; his decision - against the interest of his allies who had put him in power - to centralise that power in the Presidency, without any consultation with them; and his decision that led to the needless deaths of over 300,000 Aids sufferers because he believed the Anti-Retrovirals's that could have saved their lives were part and parcel of a Western conspiracy against Africans!