The sign language interpreter who inspired international ire for using bogus signs while translating eulogies for Nelson Mandela reportedly checked into a psychiatric hospital on Tuesday night.
“The past few days have been hard,” interpreter Thamsanqa Jantjie’s wife Siziwe told Johannesburg’s Star Newspaper. “We have been supportive because he might have had a breakdown.”
Jantjie, who flailed his arms and signed words like “prawns” and “rocking horses” during eulogies from dignitaries, said that he had suffered a schizophrenic episode and saw angels coming into the stadium.
Although an interpreter from the Deaf Federation of South Africa said that Jantjie had been criticized for shoddy work in the past, the African National Congress (ANC) said it had used him before and was unaware of complaints or a history of illness.