Mvezo residents watch funeral

By Drum Digital
15 December 2013

Residents of Mvezo, in the Eastern Cape, the village where former president Nelson Mandela was born, avidly followed his state funeral on a big television screen.

Residents of Mvezo, in the Eastern Cape, the village where former president Nelson Mandela was born, avidly followed his state funeral on a big television screen on Sunday.

They packed a tent on the dusty local soccer field. Some sat in the sun in front of the screen. Mourners paid tribute to the man they described as humble, and said he had loved his people.

"We came here to say thank you for all he did for us. He took care of us and our children. He would give them gifts," said Nomthunzi Myaka.

Among the locals was Norman Agnew, from the UK. He said he could not resist being at the public viewing area to pay his respects to Mandela.

"This is a very momentous day. I couldn't resist being here because this is a moment that will last a lifetime," he said.

Nomfundo Ngqibi said they were letting the Mandela go to rest in peace.

"He has done us good. He took care of us. We ask he look down on us and protect us."

Nurses has set up a small medical area with two beds in a corner of the tent.

The crowd smiled as Mandela's former praise singer Zolani Mkiva took to the stage and sang along with President Jacob Zuma when he prepared to start speaking.

-by Sapa

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