Johannesburg - The World-Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) expressed sadness on Friday at the news of former president Nelson Mandela's death.
“He was a man of great integrity and one of the world’s exceptional leaders,” WWF South Africa CEO Morné du Plessis said in a statement.
“We will greatly miss him, but take much from the legacy he has left as we continue our work to better our environment, our society, ourselves.”
The WWF sent its condolences to Mandela's family and close friends.
Du Plessis said Mandela had a special place in the hearts of the organisation as the WWF’s Gift to the Earth award was presented to him in 1998.
“Under his presidency, Mandela created the Cape Peninsula National Park which is home to one of the world’s seven wonders of nature, Table Mountain.
“This was of paramount conservation significance as the 30 000 hectare park protects the Cape floral kingdom,” he said.
President Jacob Zuma announced that Mandela died on Thursday night at his Houghton, Johannesburg, home surrounded by family. He was 95. - Sapa