Quieter scenes along Mandela procession

2013-12-12 08:53
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Mandela body transported for second day

See all the pictures from Pretoria where the body of former president Nelson Mandela was transported to the Union Buildings where it will lie in state for the second day:

Pretoria - The scene outside the One Military Hospital in Pretoria was quieter on Thursday as people struggled with traffic gridlock.

Close to a hundred soldiers were deployed at the huge hospital's entrance inside the vast Thaba Tshwane military base.

At an intersection close to the hospital frustrated motorists hooted and some abandoned their vehicles to speak to Tshwane metro officers blocking the road.

The motorists complained that the numerous blockages were unnecessary and causing confusion.

"The Tshwane cops do not understand, you don't just go and block every road in the vicinity of One Military Hospital. Not everyone in this road is trying to go to that hospital," said Adam Sechaba.

"We have been blocked on this Voortrekker Road for hours because the police expect our lives to stop literally," said an infuriated Sechaba.

Penultimate day

There were fewer members of the public outside the hospital on Thursday, compared to the lively crowds on Wednesday.

Military helicopters hovered above the hospital.

Some people outside the hospital said the police were making it almost impossible for them to congregate and bid farewell to former president Nelson Mandela.

By 07:00, members of the public were still walking to the hospital.

A few kilometres away, in Pretoria central, hundreds of police officers lined the streets from after 05:00. Hundreds more walked along Bosman Street to join their colleagues on Kgosi Mampuru Street.

Members if the public were invited to line the route and form a public guard of honour as Mandela's body was transported from the hospital to the Union Buildings, where he will lie in state for the penultimate day.

Members of the public can view the body from 08:00 to 05.30.

Mandela died at his home in Houghton, Johannesburg, last Thursday night at the age of 95. He will be buried in Qunu in the Eastern Cape on Sunday.

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