South Africa Lay Winnie Mandela To Rest

Culture shock for Brazilian photographer attending Winnie Madikizela-Mandela's memorial

Culture shock for Brazilian photographer attending Winnie Madikizela-Mandela's memorial

Some ANC members started attempts to drown out Malema by booing and singing, but he continued and called on Soweto residents to never forget her name.

Mourners sang and cheered as her body was brought into the Orlando stadium where the funeral service was taking place.

Tens of thousands of mourners at Orlando Stadium rose to bid farewell to the Mother of the Nation.

Madikizela-Mandela, aged 81, passed away on 2 April at Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg.

She said those who vilified her mother should not for one moment think that the family would forget that.

South Africa's former Presidents Thabo Mbeki, Kgalema Motlanthe and Jacob Zuma also attended the burial. He described Madikizela Mandela as fearless.

"Let us honour her memory by pledging here that we will not betray the trust of her people, we will not squander or steal their resources, and that we will serve them diligently and selflessly", the president said. "They are crying the loudest, more than us - who died for you", Malema said, before lambasting those who he believed had wronged the struggle veteran.

Apartheid security agents have gone on the record revealing the extent of their propaganda campaign against Madikizela-Mandela.

Winnie held different positions in the government including and was appointed deputy Prime Minister of arts, culture, science and technology in 1994.

"As each of them disavowed these lies, I had to ask myself - why have they sat on the truth had wait until my mother's death to tell it?"

Ramaphosa described her as "an advocate for the dispossessed and the marginalized" and "a voice for the voiceless". When we lost our loved ones, when people were in pain, overcome with anger, prone to violence, she came to touch our wounds.

Much of the stadium is filled with supporters of the ruling African National Congress party, the former liberation movement that Madikizela-Mandela had a rocky relationship with in recent years.

Ever since we announced that my mother had departed this world, we've been comforted and strengthened in our hour of grief and weakness by your love, your messages, your visitations, and above all your testimonies of what my mother meant to each of you.

"There are many young women who want to be like her who want to change the storyline about women, who want to ensure that we kill patriarchy".

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"The enemy expected her to return from Brandfort diminished, broken and defeated", Ramaphosa said, in apparent reference to the isolated town the white minority government had forced to live in internal exile for years in 1977.

The ANC's current president Cyril Ramaphosa, who is also the country's president, the ANC Women's League, and the UDF were just some of those Malema targeted.

The acting king said they owe the Madikizela family an apology. "Give us a sign Mama", said Malema.

Mandela said her mother dared to take on one of the most evil regimes of the past century. "Zenani's tears revealed Mama Winnie's wounds".

One of the most important measures of how someone's life has been lived is the extent to which they have touched others.

Despite it being a funeral, most of the crowd was jubilant, celebrating Winnie Madikizela-Mandela's life with cheers, song, dance and salute.

Ramaphosa said she defied apartheid ideology and male superiority. She believed it was her calling to defend and protect both from the constant assaults by the Apartheid State. He continued, "Yet through everything Mama Winnie endured they could not break her, they could not silence her". "If you disrespect President Ramaphosa, you're disrespecting Mama Winnie".

However, the conviction was later overturned with the court handing her a suspended sentence of three years and six months for fraud.

Most of their 38-year marriage was spent apart, leaving her to raise their two daughters alone as she kept his political dream alive. EFF leaders encouraged their members to act with discipline during the funeral.

While their marriage withstood the battle against apartheid, it couldn't withstand the pressure of freedom. She was a witness to the truths and horrors of our nation, not only because of her own hardships but because of her courage.

Grandson Zondwa Mandela spoke of everyday heroes and said her spirit lives on in women who strive to carve out a livelihood. When we could not be with her, she wrote letters to us. The same people who sold you out?

She was sacked after allegations of corruption emerged with her name featuring prominently.

Global model Naomi Campbell, who also paid tribute to Madikizela-Mandela, said the world was lucky to have witnessed the struggle stalwart's greatness and courage.

The coffin carrying Winnie arrives at the Fourways Memorial Park in Soweto. It is hard to accept that she is no longer with us. She guides our struggles. May her soul rest in eternal peace.

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