Winnie Madikizela-Mandela with Julius Malema and Cyril Ramaphosa at her 80th birthday celebration at Cape Town's Mount Nelson Hotel. Picture: Elmond Jiyane

Cape Town - The wit and charm that has made Winnie Madikizela-Mandela one of South Africa’s most loved struggle stalwarts was on full display at her 80th birthday celebration at Cape Town's Mount Nelson Hotel on Wednesday.

After a stirring speech by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, Madikizela-Mandela, who turns 80 on September 26, took the podium and had the audience in stitches.

"I have to keep pinching myself to find out whether I am really still alive," said Madikizela-Mandela to roars of laughter.

“I am not going to say anything about Marikana today... and I am not going to talk about the leadership in the country and the weakening rand,” she quipped.

To EFF leader Julius Malema she said: “I hope now you will stop asking that people must bring things back.”

Malema responded that they has already brought things back.

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