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Gallery: Madiba tributes far and wide

Published Dec 6, 2013


While politicians and other high-profile people churned out statements on Nelson Mandela's death, many ordinary South Africans just sang and danced, while people from all over the globe found their own ways of paying tribute to the icon.

As statements flooded into newsrooms, South Africans arrived outside Mandela's Houghton, Johannesburg home, and at his old house in Vilakazi Street, Soweto. Young and old, some still in their pyjamas, started singing outside his homes; anything from the national anthem to traditional hymns.

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In Vilakazi Street a 70-year-old grandmother summed up the mood: "As Africans when we are happy, depressed or mourning we sing. Singing relieves us.

"I am relieved that Madiba passed. It was unfair to expect him to jump out of his sick bed and run around like a boy," Ernestina Matshaka said.

She danced like a youngster to a freedom song about Mandela and said she would be very happy if South Africans could remain calm and respect the legacy Mandela left. The crowd of young and old were energised by Matshaka, dancing and singing with abandon.

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At the Houghton house, a group formed, danced and sang "Nelson Mandela ha hona ya tshwanang le ena" (Nelson Mandela there is no one like you), accompanied by loud clapping.

Flowers, cards and candles were laid in the flower beds near the house's gate as police officers looked on. A man and woman brought a bag of candles and packed them out neatly on the grass before lighting them.

Source: Sapa

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