Tributes for #WinnieMandela pour in from across SA's political divide
Politics / 2 April 2018, 8:00pm / Mary Jane Mphahlele
Cape Town -
Parliamentary officials have added their messages of condolenes to those mourning the death of ANC stalwart and anti-apartheid activist Nomzamo Winifred Madikizela-Mandela who died at the age of 81.
National Assembly speaker Baleka Mbete and National Council of Provinces chairwoman Thandi Modise praised the struggle veteran as “one of the pioneer members of Parliament and our parliamentary democracy”.
“Her vibrancy, unending inner and outer beauty, her passionate connection with ordinary citizens, and her witty and critical mind had contributed in keeping the critical solidarity of the women of South Africa in every facet of life,” they said.
The Mother of the Nation, as she was affectionately known, died peacefully after a long illness on Monday.
Just received the shattering news of the passing mama Nomzamo ... Hamba Kahle Mbokodo ✊🏿
The family’s spokesperson Victor Dlamini said Mrs Mandela "succumbed peacefully in the early hours of Monday afternoon surrounded by her family and loved ones" following a long illness.
Madikizela Mandela was born in Bizana in the Eastern Cape in 1936 and later moved to Johannesburg to study social work after matriculating. She met the late Nelson Mandela, former president president in 1957 whom he married in 1958.
The couple had two children during their short lived marriage, which was interrupted by Mandela’s arrest in 1963.
They divorced in 1996 amid rumours that Winnie Mandela had an affair.
Winnie has served as deputy minister for arts and culture, and a member of Parliament. She has also served as chairwoman of the Southern Transvaal region of the SA National Civic Organisation.
I'm truly sad to hear about the passing of Mama Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, a true struggle hero. Her selfless battle to liberate our country, will always be remembered. Sincere condolences to the Mandela family. Hamba kahle Mama Winnie. Lala ngoxolo Nomzamo. Photo: @GCISMediapic.twitter.com/mcbSEGI0mW
In a media statement, Mbete and Modise said: “She (Madikizela Mandela) defied the repressive laws and associated patriarchy, embodied a brave character of an unflinching woman in the wake of all odds against her throughout her life. She was a solid rock, a defender of the vulnerable and defenceless”.
@eNCAnews. Winnie Mandela passed on. Our condolences to the family , ANC and friends. Your contribution in the struggle is well documented. We are today free because of people like her. Rest In Peace Mangutyana.