11/04/2018: ANC members attennding the Memorial service for the late Winnie Madikizela-Mandela at the Orlando Stadium in Soweto.496 Picture: Matthews Baloyi/African News Agency (ANA)

JOHANNESBURG - The late struggle icon Winnie Madikizela-Mandela had the spiritual words in her mind before she died, said her personal assistant Zodwa Zwane.

She told mourners of how Madikizela-Mandela insisted that she come to Soweto to see her on Saturday. Madikizela-Mandela attended her local Wesley Catholic Church on Easter Friday.

"She was in church for hours on Friday. She was so excited when I called her on Saturday morning...she started preaching to me on the phone about the sermon at church," she said.

Madikizela-Mandela relayed the priest's sermon, and talked about how Jesus fell as he was dragged to the cross.

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"The part that got to her was when Jesus fell...she said Zodwa I know the pain of falling, and when you stand up you see people's faces and you long for your freedom...I know that pain Zodwa...please come over, let's discuss this."

When she got to her Soweto home, Madikizela-Mandela talked about Jesus' last days.

"She said Zodwa, I don't have tears anymore...sometimes you feel lonely in the midst of people because sometimes people you love are not ther."

Zwane says she understood Economic Freedom Fighters' leader Julius Malema when he said Madikizela-Mandela was a "brick rejected by the builder".

She said she was paying tribute with all previous personal assistants that worked for Madikizela-Mandela in mind. Zwane said no one could greet in a warm way like Madikizela-Mandela.

"She would make you feel comfortable, whoever you are. I was very exciting to serve Mrs Mandela. I got home after the first interview and was thankful to God that I met and had a chat with her."

African News Agency/ANA