South African journalist Oliver Meth, who received online death threats last year and has been missing since 8 April, has been found.
His friend, Tessa Tucker, reported him missing at the Florida police station on Thursday.
But just after 13:00 on Friday, Tucker posted: “I am pleased to advise you all that Oliver Meth has been found and is safe and sound. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for your support, concerns, prayers, messages and sharing of the missing report.
“Unfortunately, currently, I do not have full details of what exactly inspired; however, I have been in contact with [Meth].”
According to the missing person’s report, Meth was last seen on Wednesday last week at about 11:45 when he left Horison on the West Rand for the Bree Street taxi rank in Johannesburg to get another taxi to Parkview, where he lives.
The 34-year-old has written for publications such as Daily Maverick, Sunday Tribune and Daily Vox.
He also worked as an independent media consultant on the CR17 campaign in which President Cyril Ramaphosa was elected head of the governing ANC – a role he fully disclosed, but which subjected him to heavy criticism and death threats on Twitter.
Meth said accusations that he was a “paid journalist” were incorrect and based on slander.
“I’d like to place on record, that I worked as a media consultant on the campaign and was paid for services rendered, as a freelancer,” Meth tweeted at the time.
In another tweet, he stated: “I was not a practising journalist at [the] time, but a full-time postgraduate student that took on various consultancy work. These attacked (sic) and allegations are unfounded.”
“The good thing that has come out of all of this besides the fact that Oliver is safe is the support we received from everybody in finding him, it’s made me believe that there are millions of good people out there and people always willing to help each other as a nation. I’m proud to be a South African, we definitely support each other never mind the circumstances,” Tucker said.
On Friday afternoon, Meth tweeted: “Thank you to everyone. I’m fine and have just been taken to a healthcare facility to receive medical attention, from here I’ll report to the Florida SAPS to make a statement and will be resting them after.”