South African President Jacob Zuma, second left, talks with Mandla Mandela, left, after they and other dignitaries unveiled a bust of former South African President Nelson Mandela, right, at the South African Parliament in Cape Town, South Africa, Monday, April 28, 2014. South African President Jacob Zuma and members of the South African Parliament unveiled the bust of Mandela at Parliament, forming part of celebrations for 20-years anniversary of a democratic Parliament in South Africa after the end of white rule. (AP Photo/Schalk van Zuydam)

Cape Town -

The bust of Madiba graced Parliament’s precinct for 48 hours - before it was removed on Wednesday for repairs after a police vehicle reversed into it.

“The Secretary to Parliament Michael Coetzee is following up on this morning’s incident, which resulted in the right shoulder of the bust being slightly dented and scratched,” Parliament said, describing the incident as a “freak accident”.

Unveiled by President Jacob Zuma only on Monday as part of the Freedom Day celebrations, the slightly over 2-metre bronze bust on a granite plinth stands outside the entrance to the National Assembly.

When Parliament is in sitting, the area can be a busy one: it links Parliament Avenue, and one of the entrances, to the MPs’ underground parking area, and also to the main entrance of Parliament.

When ministers’ attend sittings, their cars usually are parked right up at the columnaded entrance to the National Assembly.

However, Parliament is currently not in session, having risen in late March so parliamentarians could hit the election campaign trail.

“The area around the bust is a security zone where no ordinary cars are allowed to park... Further details will be provided in due course about steps being taken to minimise future risk of damage to the bust,” said Parliament, adding that Madiba’s bust is expected to return in its rightful place on Thursday.

Political Bureau