Soweto - IFP leader Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi has praised struggle stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela for her resilience in tough times.
Buthelezi said with all the suffering that the Mandela family had endured during apartheid it was amazing to see how they had turned out.
He was speaking at amemorial service for Madikizela-Mandela at Orlando Stadium on Wednesday. He was a close friend of the family.
Buthelezi praised Madikizela-Mandela’s character.
“Mam Winnie was carved by injustice. Some ask was she a sinner or a saint? I believe that a saint is not someone who has never sinned, but someone who dies trying to be better ,” said Buthelezi.
Madikizela’s personal assistant Zodwa Zwane spoke fondly about her boss. She tried to trace the steps of her last days with Madikizela-Mandela.
“It was exciting to serve Mrs Mandela. I represent the gardeners, cleaners and protectors, she said.
Zwane joked about Madikizela-Mandela requesting to go to the ZCC church in Moria for Easter service.
“We lost Mama unexpectedly. Easter Monday will never be the same. I wish the family comfort. She wanted to go to Moria in Limpopo, but then changed her mind because I wasn’t going,” said Zwane.
“There is no one I know who knows how to greet people like uMama Winnie.”
Zwane said Madikizela-Mandela wanted her to speak at her funeral.
“I said unfortunately you won’t hear what I’ll say at your funeral because you’ll be late because you were always late,” she joked with tears in her eyes.
Zwane also spoke about Madikizela-Mandela’s passion for Christianity.
Other speakers are expected to speak that memorial including Deputy President David Mabuza.