Cape Town – The sign language interpreter accused of using fake hand signals at former president Nelson Mandela’s memorial says he suffered a schizophrenic episode.
Thamsanqa Jantjies told the Cape Times that he was unsure whether it was the magnitude of what he was doing or the happiness he felt throughout the day that might have triggered the attack while on stage.
At a certain point during the proceedings Jantjies, who uses medication for schizophrenia, lost concentration, started hearing voices and began hallucinating.
He later apologised for his actions saying he was ‘alone in a dangerous situation’ and that there was nothing he could do.
International media have zoned in on the incident which saw US president Barack Obama’s speech interpreted by a ‘fake’.
Fox News highlighted security concerns quoting White House Principal Press secretary who said that he was not aware of any security concerns near Obama.
Friends, colleagues, comrades and family of Nelson
Mandela are invited to share their memories and tributes, and to light a candle
for him, on his profile at Remembered.co.za.