'We had a friend and comrade in arms in Winnie Madikizela-Mandela' - Zim VP

2018-04-06 20:29
Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. (GCIS)

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. (GCIS)

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Constantino Chiwenga, who is acting as president while Emmerson Mnangagwa is abroad, hailed Winnie Madikizela-Mandela in his condolence message sent to SA President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Chiwenga is the southern African country’s acting president in the absence of President Emmerson Mnangagwa who is on a state visit to China.

He said he learned with “shock and deep sorrow” of the passing of the struggle stalwart.

“It was with deep shock and profound sorrow, that I received the sad news of the passing on of liberation struggle icon and veteran stalwart of the African National Congress (ANC) Nomzamo Winifred Madikizela-Mandela," said Chiwenga in a statement issued by the government.

“In ... Madikizela-Mandela, we in Zimbabwe had a friend and comrade in arms we could rely upon. We are consoled by the fact that she lived to witness the realisation of her dream of a free, democratic and non-racial South Africa."

Chiwenga said that the former ANC Women’s League president would be remembered for her “bravery, numerous sacrifices and unwavering commitment to freedom for her people”.

His remarks comes two days after Zimbabwe's parliament said it was planning to honour the late Madikizela-Mandela.

Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) lawmaker Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga said that the Women and Youth Committee in Zimbabwe's Parliament and the Women's Coalition were planning a memorial service.

"We are in the process of organising a memorial service for our icon [Madikizela-Mandela] here in Zimbabwe. It is [indisputable] that she deserves it.

Madikizela-Mandela is expected to be buried in Johannesburg on April 14.

News24 reported that her relatives' wishes were that she be buried at the Fourways Memorial Park, north of Sandton. This is where her great-granddaughter, Zenani Zanethemba Nomasonto Mandela, was buried in 2010.

Zenani was 13 when she was killed in a car accident in the early hours of June 11, 2010, after attending the FIFA World Cup kick-off concert at the Orlando Stadium in Soweto.

She was the grandchild of Madikizela-Mandela's eldest daughter, Zindzi.

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