One of South Africa's preparations for Republic Day, May 30th, is the striking of 3 million commemorative medals for the country's school children.
TGV School children at play
SV School girls
SCU Boys and girls file into school
SV Medals stamped out in the Mint
CU Stampings into box
SV Women sort stampings on conveyors belt
SV ZOOM IN... Stamping into tray
SV Medals are lacquered
SV Medals dipped into acid
SV Dried in sawdust
SV Medals into box
SV Boxes of medals for delivery
CU Label on box "Director of Education, Windhoek SWA"
FULL CU.. Two new medals.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: One of South Africa's preparations for Republic Day, May 30th, is the striking of 3 million commemorative medals for the country's school children.
Film taken at the Pretoria Mint, May 5th, shows machines turning out 60,000 medals a day. They are stamped, fitted with pins, sprayed with lacquer, dipped in acid to make them shiny, and dried in sawdust.
For the Pretoria Mint the job of making these medals come on top of the formidable task of providing a steady flow of coins under South Africa's decimalization system.
Local reporter say the issue of medals and flags for Republic Day has become a "subject of major controversy" among parents. Durban parents are "incensed" at being asked to choose whether or not they wish their children to receive the emblems. They say their children might be "victimised" as a result of their choice. One man in Durban is said to have imported 250,000 Union Jacks to be issued to schools as a "counter-measure".