Johannesburg - “On Thursday, December 5 at 20.30 a heart more precious than gold stopped beating,” said Deputy president Kgalema Motlanthe while addressing congregants during a special prayer service at the Grace Bible church in Pimville, Soweto on Sunday.
He spoke of a Mandela who communicated a message that “nothing is impossible as long as you've got your conviction”, a man who “personified unity and diversity”, and harboured no bitterness towards his oppressors.
“His life is no different to the many lives of our people. Circumstances in which he was born could have very well confined him to the village of Qunu. But because God works in wonderful ways, he left his home for the reef.”
He also paid homage to boxing great Baby Jakes Matlala, who died on Saturday.
“Poets in the future will say about Madiba that he left giant footsteps in the sands of time. Just last week we buried Reggie September and to him we said you will never walk alone.
“Even as we are paying homage to Madiba today we say you will not walk alone because right behind you walks a little giant Baby Jake Matlala... and to him (Matlala) we say walk behind giant footsteps of our great Madiba.
“Once you are a trailblazer it means you are venturing into the unknown but once you see footsteps you say there may have been others before you,” said Motlanthe.
Also in Soweto, Dozens of Julius Malema's Economic Freedom Fighters members marched through Vilakazi street on Sunday afternoon, chanting struggle songs and vowing to continue Nelson Mandela's legacy.
- The Star