Following the passing of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela on Thursday December 5th 2013, the country had come to a stand still. Since then there have been plans for a memorial and funeral. Today December 10 marks the day when South Africa, its people and the world have the chance to celebrate Madiba’s life and bid farewell to him.
“When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace”
The famous words uttered by non other than the father of our nation, Nelson Mandela. A few words said by the man who himself practiced what he preached. It seems a life that has come full circle and a cheerful irony that he who said this is one who can finally rest in peace.
A mood of nostalgia and celebration pours out from the people of South Africa today as the stream into the FNB stadium in Nasrec for the memorial service of Nelson Mandela.
Sitting in the EWN newsroom, buzzing around as reporters run into a frenzy covering the memorial, we all remember the importance of relaying information to the public simultaneously remembering to bear in mind the importance of today.
It is a rainy and overcast day in Johannesburg, however this has not stopped the nation from arriving in the thousands to the stadium to celebrate the life that was Nelson Mandela.
An estimated 90 000 people will be present for the #MandelaMemorial today with 90 head of states from around the world also flying in for the huge event. Most them, which include US President Barack Obama and Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, have already landed at the Waterkloof air force base this morning.
A momentous time in history would be an understatement. South Africa, Johannesburg is by far the most important area in the world right now and the former President of our country being the central figure of all this celebration.
I feel privileged to have lived in the time of Nelson Mandela and I feel further honoured to be present in this city for the time when we are able to say goodbye and celebrate how far our country has come since aparthied because of Madiba.
Whether you met Mandela, watched him on television, listened to him on radio, or read his books, if you lived in South Africa or you are a person of colour living in other parts of the world, Mandela affected your life.
It is a sad day when we realise that our father has now passed on and he has left the future of this country in our hands now. He has brought us through 19 years of democracy and now it is time for him to rest. A beautiful, influential and legendary 95 years it was while Mandela blessed us with his presence. Rest In peace Tata.
I am grateful for the life I have now because of your struggle, your fight and your determinant soul and peaceful nature. Thank You!