In his latest autobiographical book published in June 2009 in Paris by Editions Lafon: "Parler vrai pour l'Afrique. Entretiens avec Edouard Dor (Speaking truth to Africa. Interviews with Edward Dor)", the president of Congo, Denis Sassou-Nguesso falsely attributed the preface to Nelson Mandela.Mandela denies having read the book and responds by asserting that an association with Denis Sassou-Nguesso would be more damaging to the image he conveys.
The Nobel Peace says he never wrote a foreword for the book by Denis Sassou-Nguesso and threatened to file a complaint against him.
Verne Harris, the acting head of the foundation said he had consulted his lawyers on the issue to assess the damage caused to take legal action. He confirmed the words of Mandela and said: "Nelson Mandela has neither read the book or writing a preface for him. We condemn this brazen abuse of the use of the name of Mandela. This is outrageous, the name of Mandela is abused for political and commercial, but this time, saying he supports someone like Denis Sassou-Nguesso, a dictator whose elections are routinely rigged and boycotted by the opposition is still more damaging. (...) This is one of the most coarse having a direct negative impact on the legacy of Madiba in Africa. "
A spokesman of Michel Lafon, the French publisher of the book said that "the preface was provided by the author of the book, which is the Congolese head of state himself, Mr. Denis Sassou-Nguesso ".
On 23 November 2009, the South African Minister of Construction and Housing, Tokyo Sexwale, himself a member of the Mandela Foundation has recognized that the statements contained in the preface had been held by Nelson Mandela in 1996. He held out his speech to an audience granted him by President Denis Sassou Nguesso.
Born in 1943 in Edou, northern Congo, Denis Sassou-Nguesso has the rank of colonel in the Congolese army when he comes to power February 5 1979 after ruling General Joachim Yhombi-Opango. On August 16, 1992, he lost the elections against Professor Pascal Lissouba. After 16 months of exile in Paris, he triggers the Civil War June 5, 1997 and returned to power October 25, 1997. He was elected in 2002 and 2009