/ 21 January 2014

ANC employees linked to sign language interpreter resign

Two ANC employees who were linked to a fake sign language interpreter at former president Nelson Mandela's memorial service resigned, the party confirmed on Tuesday.

"They resigned. They were never fired," said ANC head of communications Keith Khoza.

"No reasons were given. They just submitted their resignation letter. It happened in December after the incident."

Khoza was responding to a report in the New Age that ANC spokesperson Jackson Mthembu's personal assistant Cikizwa Xozwa and her husband Reverand Bantubahle Xozwa, head of the ANC's religious and traditional affairs desk, were fired.

The couple were allegedly owners of the company interpreter Thamsanqa Jantjie worked for.

After the memorial service on December 10, Jantjie told various media groups that he suffered a schizophrenic episode in which he saw angels, and that he  panicked when he realised he was surrounded by armed police.

The ANC on December 16 said it had nothing to do with the appointment of the bogus sign language interpreter.

'Thamsanqa is not an interpreter'
"The ANC reiterates that the organisation did not take part in the government process to procure the service provider for the memorial service," Mthembu said at the time, reacting to media reports that some employees of the ANC owned a company that employed Jantjie. 

The Sunday Times then reported that Jantjie was employed by a company owned by Xozwa.

Xozwa told the paper that Jantjie was employed as an administrator and facilitator in his company, South African Interpreters.

"Thamsanqa is not an interpreter," Xozwa was quoted as saying.

"He was disqualified years ago on the basis of his health. He was interpreting at the memorial service in his personal capacity." – Sapa