Johannesburg - The City of Cape Town mourned the death of former president Nelson Mandela on Thursday.
“His legacy is wrapped in the future of our nation,” mayor Patricia de Lille said in a statement.
“Though he may not have wished it, he was more than just a man: he was and remains the ideal by which we all try and live.”
Just before midnight on Thursday, President Jacob Zuma said Mandela, 95, had died at his Houghton residence.
De Lille said that the city had a special relationship with the international peace icon.
“To our country's shame, it was the place where he was imprisoned by the apartheid regime for trying to set us free. He was not imprisoned for a crime; he was imprisoned because he knew what justice was and he would not stop fighting until it was achieved.”
The greatest symbol of his sacrifice was Robben Island prison, the shell of which remained as a reminder of the country's brutal past.
“But Cape Town is also the place of Madiba's eventual victory. From the balcony of our City Hall, he pledged to continue the fight for our freedom to the city and to the world,” De Lille said.
Mandela was awarded the freedom of the city in 1997.
De Lille said that the best way of celebrating Mandela's life was by remembering his legacy.
“On behalf of the people of Cape Town, I extend my deepest condolences to the Mandela family: his beloved wife Graca; his children; grandchildren; and great-grandchildren.
“We know of your pain. We share it.”