Inter-Ministerial Committee briefs media on special official funeral of the late Winnie Madikizela-Mandela

Statement of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on the special official funeral of the late Mrs Winnie Madikizela-Mandela

Director of the programme, Acting Director-General of GCIS

Members of the IMC present here today

Members of the media

Ladies and gentlemen

The Inter-Ministerial Committee on State and Official Funerals wishes to take this opportunity to echo the voice of the President in expressing condolences to the Mandela and Madikizela families, all South Africans and the world at large.

On behalf of our government we want to thank everyone across the globe for their overwhelming show of support to the family. We have witnessed how people from all walks of life, including the media, are coming together to celebrate and reflect on the selfless sacrifices made by Mama Winnie, as she was affectionately known. This bears testimony that her legacy and fight for equality and justice will continue as a hallmark of our common endeavour for justice.

We acknowledge the messages of condolences that have been received from various Heads of States and eminent persons across the globe. Mama Winnie touched the lives of many people in our country and beyond by the tenacity she displayed during the fight for freedom and the subsequent suffering she endured as a result. It is with a sense of sorrow to accept her demise from this world but also a sense of pride that she lived to ultimately see freedom for the people of our country. Her struggle was not in vain.

Since her passing on Monday, 2nd April 2018, many South Africans and the international community have expressed their condolences by sharing their love for Mama Winnie, their experiences, directly and indirectly with her. Our government has befittingly declared a Special Official Funeral Category 1 which entails elements of military ceremonial honours and is declared in line with the Presidency’s State, Official and Provincial Official Funeral Policy, for persons of extraordinary credentials specifically designated by the President of the Republic of South Africa.

National days of mourning have been declared from 3rd April up to the 14th April 2018. In line with this declaration, the National Flag have with immediate effect, been flown as half-mast at all flag stations countrywide and at South African diplomatic missions abroad. This will be observed until the evening of 14 April 2018.

In consultation with Mrs Madikizela-Mandela’s family, government will host a memorial service at the Orlando Stadium, Soweto on the 11th April 2018 followed by a funeral service on the 14th April 2018 at the same venue. This changes the earlier announcement of the venue of the memorial service which was to be at the Regina Mundi Catholic Church. The change was made after the consideration of the size of the venue and the expected people to attend the memorial service.

Condolence books for the late Mama Winnie Madikizela�Mandela will be available at the following venues:

1. International Ports of Entry (airports)

2. DIRCO Head Office at the OR Tambo Building in Pretoria

3. Parliament

4. Tuynhuys

5. The Union Buildings

6. Department of Arts and Culture

7. Department of Communication (GCIS Head office)

8. All Provincial Legislatures

9. All Premier’s Offices

We will also be placing the Condolences Books at Brandfort, Mbizana and Mthatha. The exact venue in these places will be communicated as soon as they have been finalised.

Mama Winnie Madikizela-Mandela dedicated her life to fight for the, reduction of poverty, the abolishment of racial injustices as well as the struggle for gender equality. As we pay tribute and celebrate her life, let us reflect on what we do to ensure we continue her legacy of fighting for social justice.

We call on all political parties, faith based organisation and civil society to work in cohesion during the mourning period including the memorial and funeral services. All activities should be conducted with respect and dignity, as Mama Winnie displayed love to all people from all walks of life. All members of the public are invited to come out in their numbers to celebrate the life and legacy of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. Should provinces and municipalities wish to organise memorial events in honour of Mama Winnie, they should do so after duly adopted resolutions of their Executive Councils and Municipal Councils, respectively. In this regard, the Minister of COGTA will issue a guiding letter to provinces and municipalities later today (Thursday, 05 April).

Members of the media are requested to apply for accreditation for the official memorial service and official funeral of the Mama Winnie. The link for the online registration is on the GCIS website. The deadline for the submission of the details is 12h00 on Friday 6 April 2018. The venue for the collection of the media accreditation cards will be communicated in due course.

Lastly, as the Inter-Ministerial Committee we are satisfied with the preparatory work for both the memorial service and the funeral. We also appreciate the outpouring of the support and the manner in which the public is celebrating the life of Mama Winnie. We also would like to thank the members of the media who have made it possible for those who are unable to be in Gauteng to still be able to be part of these events especially at the family house in Orlando.

The Inter Ministerial Committee will communicate further details about the Funeral services and logistics accordingly.

Source: Government of South Africa