A “cow of accompaniment” would be slaughtered early on the morning of former president Nelson Mandela’s burial in accordance with Xhosa culture, an anthropology professor said.
Traditionally, the ox would be the favourite from the deceased’s herd, said Walter Sisulu University anthropology professor, Masilo Lamla.
He said the most important step would be the slaughter of the “cow of accompaniment” – an ox chosen by the deceased. He said the ox would have been chosen from the deceased’s herd of cows and would have been his personal favourite when he was still alive.
Lamla said the ox was usually slaughtered in the morning by a recognised slaughterer, who might not be a family member. The cow must be slaughtered in the kraal and it “must bellow as a sign that the ancestors have accepted it”.