News / Africa

    Nelson Mandela Laid to Rest in Ancestral Village

    Nelson Mandela Laid to Rest in Ancestral Villagei
    X
    December 15, 2013 4:54 PM
    South Africa’s first black president, anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela, has been buried in his home village near Qunu, in Eastern Cape Province. Several thousand family members and close friends attended the funeral as we hear from VOA’s Scott Bobb in Qunu.
    Scott Bobb
    South Africa’s first black president, anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela, has been buried in his home village near Qunu, in Eastern Cape Province.  Several thousand family members and close friends attended the funeral.

    Nelson Mandela was laid to rest Sunday among the hills of his ancestral homeland, eulogized by friends, family and admirers.

    His longtime friend, Ahmed Kathrada, called Mandela his older brother and moved the 4,500 participants with memories from the decades of struggle against apartheid and prison.

    "The last time I saw Madiba alive was when I visited him in hospital.  I was filled with an overwhelming sadness and emotion and I cried.  He held my hand and it was profoundly heart-breaking and it brought out all the emotions in me," he said.

    Mandela’s granddaughter, Nandi Mandela, recalled lighter stories about the family patriarch known to all by his clan name, Madiba.

    She concluded in Xhosa saying, “Go well Madiba.  Go well to the land of your ancestors.  You have run your race.”

    • In this video frame grab, military officers escort former South African President Nelson Mandela's casket as it arrives at his burial site following his funeral service in Qunu, Dec. 15, 2013.
    • Former South African President Nelson Mandela's coffin arrives at the family gravesite for burial at his ancestral village of Qunu in the Eastern Cape province, 900 km (559 miles) south of Johannesburg.
    • A woman wipes away a tear while watching the funeral of former president Nelson Mandela on a big screen at the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg.
    • Three helicopters fly over the gravesite during the burial of Nelson Mandela in his hometown Qunu.
    • Military personnel line the route as former South African President Nelson Mandela's casket is taken to its burial place in Qunu.
    • General view of the tent where the funeral service for former South African president Nelson Mandela is taking place in Qunu.
    • South African President Jacob Zuma sits between Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, Nelson Mandela's former wife, and Nelson Mandela’s widow Graca Machel, right, attend the funeral service for former president in Qunu.
    • People stand outside the dome where the funeral of former South African president Nelson Mandela is taking place in Qunu.
    • Chief Mantanzima speaks during the funeral service for former South African president Nelson Mandela in Qunu.
    • The casket bearing the remains of former South African President Nelson Mandela is brought into a tent for his funeral service for in Qunu.
    • Archbishop Desmond Tutu is hugged as he arrives for the funeral service for Nelson Mandela in Qunu, South Africa.
    • Members of the Mdakane family watch a television in their home showing the funeral service of former South Africa President Nelson Mandela in the Soweto township, Johannesburg.
    • Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, left, Nelson Mandela's former wife, left and Nelson Mandela’s widow Graca Machel stand over the former South African president's casket during his funeral service in Qunu.
    • British entrepreneur Richard Branson, right and television host Oprah Winfrey attend the funeral service for former South African President Nelson Mandela in Qunu.
    • Two people follow the proceedings of Nelson Mandela's funeral on a big screen in Nelson Mandela square in Sandton, Johannesburg.

    President Jacob Zuma led the crowd in a struggle song, singing we the black people are crying for our land, which was taken by the white people.

    Zuma went on to say the day marked the end of Madiba's remarkable 95-year journey of life and that South Africans would cherish every moment spent with him.

    “You were indeed an extraordinary human being," he said.  "You will remain our guiding light, illuminating the path as we continue the long journey to build the South Africa of your dreams.  We shall not say goodbye, for you are not gone.  You will live forever in our hearts and minds.”

    Mandela's Body Arrives in Hometown Villagei
    X
    December 14, 2013 3:29 PM
    Video - Mandela's Body Arrives in Hometown Village
    Residents of Qunu gathered on a nearby hill to view the ceremony on a large screen television and pay their respects.

    Zolani Mxabo said he was feeling mixed emotions.

    “There’s a side that is happy that he’s finally getting a rest after all the troubles that he went through.  But at the same time I’m also feeling sad because he’s now resting, not dead, he’s just resting.  His soul will always be with us.  We’ll always feel the will,” said Mxabo.

    Sibongile Mfocwa met Mandela as a teenager after he was released from prison more than 20 years ago.  She says he taught her humility and other values that she tries to pass on to her four children.

    “When I talk of Nelson Mandela I tell them that perseverance pays.  Nelson Mandela is one of those strongest icons I know.  He’s one of those guys who stood up for what is right,” she said.

    After the ceremony a smaller group of mourners accompanied the coffin to the family cemetery, where traditional and ecumenical rites were performed before the body was lowered into the ground.

    You May Like

    Russian-Backed Offensive in Syria Pushes War to Tipping Point

    As threat to Aleppo and rebel forces grows, US plan to negotiate becomes less and less appealing for Syrian government, says one military analyst

    IS Runs Timber Smuggling Business in Afghanistan, Officials Say

    Government turning blind eye to smuggling, according to tribal leaders; Afghanistan's forest cover dropped by 50 percent in three decades, experts say

    Video White House Seeks $1.8 Billion to Combat Zika

    Obama administration says funding would 'support essential strategies to combat the virus' such as rapidly expanding mosquito control programs, accelerating vaccine research

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Jomo Matsveru from: Harare -ZIMBABWE
    December 21, 2013 2:27 AM
    Madiba you were a father figure not önly to the Mandela family but to Africa and all democratic nations of this universe . I salute you . You deserved to live forever.

    by: Tish Vibre from: Victoria falls Zimbabwe
    December 17, 2013 11:49 PM
    We misse and we will still love Nelson Rolinhlanhla Mandela until the end.pliz i wish Robert Mugabe will change and do like Madiba just to let us free and be freedom born again between white and black also the fact now we are surviving because of white people .

    by: RHODES. from: HARARE ZIMBABWE
    December 16, 2013 4:10 AM
    I have always wished I could meet him one day but all was in vain. I have read about him followed all his life history before in and after Jail there is no doubt one of if not the greatest man ever lived on earth that fought for everyone's right. R. I. P. MADIBA.

    by: Tawanda from: Harare
    December 16, 2013 2:04 AM
    He was understanding and impartial. We will try to emulate him.

    by: Robert from: Rustenburg
    December 15, 2013 7:56 PM
    A father who lead by example,Tata tought me that if you got talent don't seat back folding hands because the nation might seek that talent of yours in future,so the fellow south Africans and the entire africa let's not relax till we bid to rest,let's us use our talent like Tata did for the nation and for entire world,I quote "money does lead to success but is the wealth of humanity who lead to success",so fellow south africans and the continent let's use our talent in different catego
    ries of life,eg if you born to be in politics to build the nation for rightenous reason go for it,if you are an actor,go for it,if you are a business person,go for it,if you meant to a doctor,do it."I quote Tata said this country has got young powerfully and educated person than Mandela to lead this beautiful south africa,I Robert Mabe appreciate and thanks for the beautifully "states"funeral but in future the state must uses our stadiums in different provinces to gather the events like these,thanks very much and much more.

    by: Nicholas Akuamoah-Boateng from: Kumasi-Ghana
    December 15, 2013 5:46 PM
    At long last the battle has ended, and Madiba, my beloved father is gone forever! Adieu! Tata! "Ibuntu" !

    by: Nicholas Akuamoah-Boateng from: Kumasi-Ghana
    December 15, 2013 12:46 PM
    Hmmmm! At long last the battle has ended and Madiba, my beloved father has gone forever.
    In Response

    by: Erewa from: Lagos, Nigeria
    December 16, 2013 3:27 AM
    Its important to note, that the quality of a life spent is not measured in its duration but in its donation. Madiba you had proved to all and sundry, that we must bequeath a legacy by positively affecting our society before we step off the stage. You would forever remain evergreen in our memory

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenyai
    X
    February 08, 2016 4:30 PM
    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video New Hampshire Voters Are Independent, Mindful of History

    Once every four years, the northeastern state of New Hampshire becomes the center of the U.S. political universe with its first-in-the-nation presidential primary. What's unusual about New Hampshire is how seriously the voters take their role and the responsibility of being among the first to weigh in on the candidates.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Bhutanese Refugees in New Hampshire Closely Watching Primary Election

    They fled their country and lived in refugee camps in neighboring Nepal for decades before being resettled in the northeastern U.S. state of New Hampshire -- now the focus of the U.S. presidential contest. VOA correspondent Aru Pande spoke with members of the Bhutanese community, including new American citizens, about the campaign and the strong anti-immigrant rhetoric of some of the candidates.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video Sanders, Clinton Battle for Young Democratic Vote

    Despite a narrow loss to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in last week's Iowa Democratic caucuses, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders secured more than 80 percent of the vote among those between the ages of 18 and 29. VOA correspondent Aru Pande talks to Democrats in New Hampshire about who they are leaning towards and why in this week's primary.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.
    Video

    Video Microcephaly's Connection to Zika: Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Zika virus rarely causes problems for the people who get it, but it seems to be having a devastating impact on babies whose mothers are infected with Zika. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
    Video

    Video Stunning Artworks Attract Record Crowds, Thanks to Social Media

    A new exhibit at the oldest art museum in America is shattering attendance records. Thousands of visitors are lining up to see nine giant works of art that have gotten a much-deserved shot of viral marketing. The 150-year-old Smithsonian American Art Museum has never had a response quite like this. VOA's Julie Taboh reports.