Thousands say emotional goodbye to 'Mama Winnie' at funeral service

Thousands say emotional goodbye to 'Mama Winnie' at funeral service”

Madikizela-Mandela's death on April 2 at the age of 81 after a long illness was met by an outpouring of emotion across the country, with the ruling African National Congress (ANC) and opposition parties holding memorials in remembrance of her courage in the struggle to end white-minority rule.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has delivered the eulogy at the funeral service of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, praising her for showing leadership without claiming glory and for inspiring and guiding the nation.

Then, addressing members of the A.N.C. who had been hostile to Ms. Madikizela-Mandela, he said: "We see you in your lovely suits".

Tens of thousands of mourners burst into loud cheers as the coffin carrying her remains was wheeled into the stadium, less than two kilometres from her home on Saturday.

The funeral procession leaves the Orlando Stadium.

She reminded the crowd that when her father‚ Nelson Mandela‚ was imprisoned‚ it was her mother who kept his name alive.

He said she personified the true meaning of speaking truth to power and she was the authentic voice of the people's war against apartheid.

When Mandela left prison in 1990, she stood next to him, one hand clasped in his as they raised their free hands clenched in fists - a moment memorialized in a photo that became a symbol of his freedom.

For years, she was routinely harassed by apartheid-state safety forces, imprisoned and tortured.

He said she spoke of her deep desire for unity and the renewal not only of the movement that she loved dearly, but of the nation.

Madikizela-Mandela had been left to tend to her own pain alone. Too often, we were not there for her. But on Saturday, her family and comrades used her funeral to both celebrate her enormous contribution to the anti-apartheid struggle and hit out against those who campaigned against her. Without her, we wouldn't know anything of grandpa's (Nelson Mandela) struggles, and what he was going through.

"She gave everything she had", the party's deputy secretary general, Jessie Duarte, has said. Relatives carry the casket containing the body of the late Winnie Mandela at her house in Soweto in Johannesburg on April 13, 2018.

South Africa's former Presidents Thabo Mbeki, Kgalema Motlanthe and Jacob Zuma also attended the burial.

A packed stadium has broken out in cheers and shouts of "Winnie!" as the casket of anti-apartheid icon Winnie Madikizela-Mandela is walked in slowly for her official funeral. Yet, through everything, she endured.

Foreign dignitaries at the funeral include the leaders of Namibia, Swaziland and the Republic of Congo, as well as American civil rights activist Jesse Jackson and worldwide supermodel Naomi Campbell.

Cape Town - 180410 - Murals of Desmond Mpilo Tutu, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela and Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela adorn the walls along Longmarket St in the Cape Town CBD.

Ramaphosa finished on Saturday: "She lives on in all of us".

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