Author of the book "Dinner with Mugabe" and Journalist Heidi Holland at her Melville guest house in Johannesburg.03 picture: Paballo Thekiso

Johannesburg - A post-mortem on journalist Heidi Holland, who died by her own hand, has found no signs of foul play, her family said on Thursday.

“It is our view, therefore, that Heidi chose to take her own life, and did so alone,” her son Jonathan Hull said in a statement.

He said her death came as a “dreadful” blow.

“Heidi's passing has come as a dreadful, shocking blow to all of us, family and friends alike. The manner of her death is especially hard to accept and we as a family have gone to significant lengths to establish the cause and circumstances,” Hull said.

Holland was a veteran journalist and writer. In 2008, she published Dinner with Mugabe based on interviews with the Zimbabwean president.

She was also the owner of a guest house in Melville, Johannesburg.

The Melville Residents' Association issued a statement calling Holland an “eminent Melville resident”. - Sapa