A journalist who broke the story of a mother giving birth to ten children apologized after it was revealed that it was not true.
Pretoria news editor Piet Rampedi said he was “full of grief and regret” for the school, which he said had tarnished the image of Independent Media.
Gosiame Sithole, 37, has made headlines around the world following reports that he “gave birth to ten babies in a Pretoria hospital”.
Doubts, however, were raised because doctors had no birth history and the Pretoria News had no evidence that the children actually existed.
Ms Sithole has been admitted to the psychiatric ward after being found in a relative’s house on June 17.
The reporter said he believed the woman was pregnant and gave birth – not just ten children.
He said the text was written as “good news”, but now he thinks he should have taken it as an investigation.
Mr Rampedi wrote to the editor-in-chief of his party, saying: “Let me start by saying that I stand by the fact that Gosiame Sithole is pregnant, and that she gave birth. I have no doubt and I have never had it.
“However, I apologize for the inconvenience caused to the party, the company and our partners in general.”
He also said: “I have never looked for written evidence of pregnancy, such as scanners and clinic cards, as I always do with the matter of investigation. I thought there was nothing I could investigate.”
The letter went on to say: “To put it bluntly, this issue has given opponents the opportunity to challenge the integrity of the work not only of me, but also of my colleagues in the party.
“So I’m very sorry, it was unfortunate.
“And I would like to apologize to you, my colleagues and the team.”
An official investigation found that the allegation that the South African woman had given birth to ten children earlier this month was false.
A statement from the provincial government said no hospitals in Guateng province had a decuplet birth record.
Medical tests also revealed that Ms Sithole was not pregnant recently, BBC News reported
The reason for this action has not been given.
The woman is now being held under the act of mental health care to be looked after and will be given support.