Mandela back in the news a week after retiring

Cape Town- South Africa (PANA) -- Just a week after announcing his retirement from public life, former South African president Nelson Mandela found himself back in the news when he paid a surprise visit to a magistrate's court in the Eastern Cape town of Umtata on Tuesday.
Mandela, a qualified lawyer, decided to watch the proceedings in the court situated near his birthplace Qunu.
The magistrate Shamintha Pata expressed her disbelief when the world statesman walked into her court.
"I was really overwhelmed and honoured by his surprise visit to my court, it was more than just an honour," she told reporters.
Meanwhile, news of Mandela's visit spread quickly and a large crowd gathered outside to see him as he left the court.
Police and bodyguards were needed to keep the crowds away.
Mandela who is 86, last week announced that he would be spending most of his time writing memoirs of his presidency from 1994- 1999.

08 june 2004 13:50:00

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