PROFIT: Sphiwe Madlavu took the opportunity to sell ANC regalia at the memorial service. Picture Chulumanco Mahamba
The streets surrounding Orlando Stadium were filled with sounds, smells and bright colors this morning as vendors took the memorial service of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela as an opportunity to make some profit.
Dozens of stands advertised ANC regalia, food and even funeral flowers outside of the stadium entrance.
Siphiwe Madlavu, who is a registered ANC regalia vendor, hoped to use the memorial to show his support for Mama Winnie and the ANC.
“If we can get some customer support we will be very happy,” Madlavu said. “We support Mam Winnie very much.”
Though Madlavu said business hadn’t been great so far, he hoped business would pick up later on.
Event florist Njabulo Zondi also said business hasn’t been as good as he hoped it would today.
Zondi said that so far, people have “only bought one flower.”
However, he said he sells for all special occasions that he thinks will need flowers, such as funerals and birthdays.
“I thought that people would buy because there would be many people outside,” Zondi said. “And since it’s a memorial service, flowers like these are symbolic to funerals.”
Other vendors took to wearing their traditional attire as they sold goods in response to a call from the ANC for all women to wear their traditional clothing in Madikizela-Mandela’s memory.
Mother and son duo, Ellen and Duma Ngculu, donned Xhosa traditional attire as they sold snacks and soft drinks to mourners entering the stadium.
Business is “so far, so good” according to the pair. “People are buying as they go,” Ellen said.
The family usually caters at events and decided to sell only snacks for the day.
“We thought people would be here for quite a long time - the whole day - and people would get hungry,” Ngculu said.