Bay area deaf advocate: Mandela interpreter not using sign langu - WFLA News Channel 8

Bay area deaf advocate: Mandela interpreter not using sign language

Posted: Updated:
Millions around the world watched as people remembered Nelson Mandela.  By every speaker's side stood a man whose duty was to interpret what was said for the deaf and hard of hearing.

Except there was one problem: he wasn't using any sign language anybody knows.

"No. Definitely not. Definitely not. And you could see there were the same signs repeated over and over and over and over," said Chris Wagner, President of the National Association of the Deaf.

Wagner watched the speeches and wondered how a guy nobody knows in the South African deaf community could possibly get the job signing for the Mandela event.

Related content: Interpreter for deaf at Mandela event called 'fake'

"I think it's appalling. I was appalled by what I saw.  Especially for a world-wide event, it's appalling and I feel insulted. And I think a lot of deaf and hard of hearing people across the world feel that way," said Wagner.

Sign interpreters in South Africa say the man waved his hands around most of the time, and didn't use the common sign for Madiba, which is what locals call Mandela.

Related content: Mourners in South Africa flock to Mandela memorial

"He did not use that sign. He did not use the sign for Obama, he did not use the sign for Zuma. Those are just some of the most glaring, glaring mistakes," said sign interpreter Delphin Hlugwane.

In Clearwater, Chris Wagner says the deaf and hard of hearing missed out on an important event.

"Us as Americans, we're very concerned because it could happen here. My biggest concern is the vetting. Who did the vetting of this individual?" he asked.

Wagner's organization is assisting in the investigation to see how this apparent fake managed to fool so many people.

Don’t miss out on the day’s top Facebook conversations http://on.fb.me/18y81Cl


  • NewsMore>>

  • An app that repels mosquitoes? We test it.

    An app that repels mosquitoes? We test it.

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 10:58 PM EDT2014-07-30 02:58:27 GMT
    Now, there's an app that claims to keep mosquitoes away. You can download the anti-mosquito sonic repeller on your smart phone.
    Now, there's an app that claims to keep mosquitoes away. You can download the anti-mosquito sonic repeller on your smart phone.

  • Parents of Sarasota teen hit by stray bullet want others held accountable

    Parents of Sarasota teen hit by stray bullet want others held accountable

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 10:33 PM EDT2014-07-30 02:33:00 GMT
    17-year-old Teria'le was killed by a stray bullet Monday morning in Bradenton.17-year-old Teria'le was killed by a stray bullet Monday morning in Bradenton.
    The parents of a 17 -year-old girl who was hit and killed by a bullet not meant for her are looking for justice. Teria’le Rawls was killed Monday morning when she was hit by a bullet while at a party in the Royal Palm Movie Theater parking lot in Bradenton.
    The parents of a 17 -year-old girl who was hit and killed by a bullet not meant for her are looking for justice. Teria’le Rawls was killed Monday morning when she was hit by a bullet while at a party in the Royal Palm Movie Theater parking lot in Bradenton.
  • Debate over debates in FL gubernatorial race

    Debate over debates in FL gubernatorial race

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 8:35 PM EDT2014-07-30 00:35:32 GMT
    File photoFile photo
    Gov. Rick Scott and Democrat Charlie Crist are both proposing general election debates in the gubernatorial race this fall. Scott’s campaign on Tuesday said the governor would participate in three. Crist countered, saying he wanted more debates and proposing a slate of seven
    Gov. Rick Scott and Democrat Charlie Crist are both proposing general election debates in the gubernatorial race this fall. Scott’s campaign on Tuesday said the governor would participate in three. Crist countered, saying he wanted more debates and proposing a slate of seven
  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.