Qunu’s night vigil for Madiba

2013-12-06 06:46

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Xolile Madolo and his wife, Phumza, rose from their beds as soon as they heard the news of the death of former president Nelson Mandela.

Mandela died at 08.50pm last night at his home in Houghton in Joburg. It was announced by President Jacob Zuma just before midnight.

As for the Madolos, his love and sacrifice inspired them to drive 40km from Mthatha to Qunu to hold a night vigil outside Mandela’s house.

They are part of a group of eight people who have been singing outside the house since midnight as the news broke.

Although there was still little activity in Qunu by dawn, armed military police, police and traffic officers were seen outside the residence of the late former president.

Xolile, who described Mandela has a unifier, said he would miss his charisma and humanity.

“He was such a great man. We all love him and wish that his soul may rest in peace and that his family is strong during this difficult time,” Xolile said.

The Mthatha teacher said he was a member of the ANC and was concerned that Madiba had died during a period when the organisation was at war with itself.

“We need his spirit to unite us. We will continue to draw inspiration from his wisdom and sacrifice, he has done a lot for us,” he said.

Anam Mkile, who was also part of the small group of people in Qunu, said it was sad to lose a man of Madiba’s calibre.

“He was a man who loved children, was dedicated to world peace and a firm believer in education and people development. We will always love him and look up to his teaching and follow in his footsteps,” he said.

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