South Africa: 'Rabbit' to be removed from ear of Mandela statue

Cape Town, South Africa (PANA) - A rabbit sculpture inserted in one of the ears of the Nelson Mandela statue, which was unveiled a day after his burial 15 Dec. 2013, is to be removed as it was not authorised, the government said.

The world’s largest Nelson Mandela statue which was unveiled at the Union Buildings, where the former South African President took his oath of office nearly two decades ago, and where he laid in state for a week before his burial.

The nine-metre high statue shows a smiling Mandela with his arms stretched out and looking out over the capital city Pretoria.

The US$800,000 statue was created by South African sculptors Andre Prinsloo and Ruhan Janse van Vuuren.

They have subsequently admitted that they added a "small trademark" of their work as the department of arts and culture had not allow them to engrave their signatures on the statue.

"It is unfortunate that the sculptors chose to place an object in the statue without the knowledge of those who commissioned them," said Arts and Culture Minister Paul Mashatile.

PANA however quoted the department as saying the rabbit would be removed and that the sculptors had apologised.

"We accept their apology and that their intentions were honourable," department spokesperson Josias Pila said in a statement.
-0- PANA CU/SEG 22Jan2014

22 january 2014 08:57:44

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