Betsie Verwoerd, the 98-year-old widow of former prime minister Hendrik Verwoerd, died at her Orania, Northern Cape home on Tuesday, her family announced.

"She died peacefully at home in the presence of close family members, without suffering any pain," the family said in a statement from Orania.

Verwoerd is survived by seven children, 28 grandchildren, and 27 great-grandchildren.

She will be buried in Orania on Saturday at 4pm. A memorial service will be held for her in Pretoria on Sunday. - Sapa