Custom Search 1

Time to say goodbye: Mandela's body lies in state

SOLEMN: Mandela's former wife, Winnie walks past his casket during the lying in state at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, South Africa

FAMILY MEMBERS, senior officials and VIPs have paid their respects to Nelson Mandela whose body is lying in state in South Africa's Union Buildings.

A flag-draped casket made a solemn journey through the streets in Pretoria today (Dec 11), guarded by 16 motorcycle outriders on roads lined with South African’s waving their national flag as they formed a public guard of honour.

It was then carried up the steps toward to the Union Building - the seat of South Africa’s government, where Mandela was sworn in as the country's first black president nearly 20 years ago. A special viewing centre, built inside the building's amphitheatre, was named after Mandela by decree yesterday by President Jacob Zuma.

Trailing behind the coffin was Mandela's former wife Winnie, supported by his eldest daughter

His body will lie in state for three days in Pretoria, before being flown to Qunu, his home in the Eastern Cape Province ahead of his burial on Sunday (Dec 15),

The morning viewing was reserved for family and officials, with the public allowed in from midday to view the casket each afternoon.

A smaller number of international dignitaries, including the Prince of Wales and several heads of African states have confirmed their attendance to the funeral.

Thousands of mourners and well wishers are expected to come to honour the former South African president.

“Every morning, when the remains leave the mortuary to the lying in state, those routes will be made public,” said government spokesman Neo Momodu.

"We are going to be encouraging members of the public to be lining the streets” to pay their respects to Nelson Mandela."

Subscribe to The Voice database!

We'd like to keep in touch with you regarding our daily newsletter, Voice competitions, promotions and marketing material and to further increase our reach with The Voice readers.

If interested, please click the below button to complete the subscription form.

We will never sell your data and will keep it safe and secure.

For further details visit our privacy policy.

You have the right to withdraw at any time, by clicking 'Unsubscribe'.

Facebook Comments