Chief executive of MiWay Insurance Rene Otto Picture: Facebook

Johannesburg - The board of short-term insurance company MiWay on Monday distanced itself from the controversial tweets posted by CEO René Otto, saying these were not a reflection of the company's views. 

The board in a statement said it takes note of Otto's tweets as well as the subsequent social media conversations. 

Otto posted several tweets on the book The Lost Boys of Bird Island, about high-ranking former National Party officials allegedly being part of a paedophile ring involving cabinet ministers in the late 1980s, that caused an uproar among Afrikaans-speaking users, who called for a boycott of the insurance company and slammed Otto for lacking "moral judgment".

"We wish to emphasise that Otto issued the post in his personal capacity and that the comments do not in any way reflect the views of MiWay or any related group entity. 

"Otto has issued an unconditional apology, in particular for the generalisations inferred from his posting and the harm and hurt it may have caused in the Afrikaner community. He also acknowledges that he should have been more discerning in separating his twitter profile and comments from the business of MiWay. As the board, we regret the Twitter posting and the harm it may have caused."

The board added that MiWay was a proudly South African company that celebrated and embraced the diversity of cultures in South Africa. 

"More importantly, MiWay treats all its clients and stakeholders with respect, dignity and the highest standards of professionalism," it further said.