'Mama Winnie's death teaches us our differences are eclipsed by our shared desire to follow her lead' - Ramaphosa

Mama Winnie's death teaches us our differences are eclipsed by our shared desire to follow her lead said president Cyril Ramaphosa during the funeral service.
Mama Winnie's death teaches us our differences are eclipsed by our shared desire to follow her lead said president Cyril Ramaphosa during the funeral service.
Image: Gallo Images/ City Press/ Leon Sadiki

President Cyril Ramaphosa‚ delivering the eulogy for Winnie Madikizela-Mandela at her official funeral in Soweto on Saturday‚ focused on how she had united the country in her life and after her death.

“We gather here to bid farewell to Mam’ Winnie Nomzamo Madikizela Mandela — a mother‚ a grandmother‚ a great grandmother‚ a sister‚ a great leader who we have come to refer to as the Mother of our Nation‚ whose grandchildren affectionately refer to as ‘Big Mama’.

“. . . Just as we are burdened by the sorrow of her death‚ so too are we comforted by the richness and profound meaning of her life. The pain we carry in our hearts cannot be extinguished.

“...We gather here not only to pay our final respects to a great African woman‚ but to affirm the common humanity that‚ through her life‚ she revealed in us. Her life was dedicated to the unity of the daughters and sons of the African soil.

“Mam’Winnie’s life was one of service. Hers was a life of compassion. She chose as her vocation the alleviation of the suffering of others.

“. . . Her life was dedicated to the unity of the oppressed of all nations. In death‚ she has brought us all together‚ from near and far‚ across many nations and continents‚ to mourn‚ to pay homage‚ to remember and to fondly reminisce.

“. . . In death‚ she has demonstrated that our many differences along political party and racial lines and the numerous disputes we may have are eclipsed by our shared desire to follow her lead in building a just‚ equitable and caring society.”

There were tears, songs and fiery speeches as the nation bid farewell to Winnie Madikizela-Mandela who was laid to rest in Johannesburg on April 14 2018.

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