JOHANNESBURG — The South African government said Friday it is aware of reports that the bogus sign language interpreter at Nelson Mandela’s memorial once faced a murder charge, and said he is being investigated.
Phumla Williams of the government communications office said the government is investigating Thamsanqa Jantjie and how he was selected to interpret at a memorial Tuesday at which he stood close to U.S. President Barack Obama and other leaders.
“We will come back and give a full report,” Williams said of questions surrounding Jantjie. She said she and other officials are currently focusing on mourning events, which have included three days of public viewing of Mandela’s casket and will end with the anti-apartheid leader’s burial on Sunday.
Jantjie outraged deaf people by making signs they said amounted to gibberish. A South African TV news outlet, eNCA, reported that Jantjie faced a murder charge a decade…
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