Posted by Garba Ahmad | 6 December 2013 | 4,169 times
A day after News Express reported that iconic former South African President Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela was on his deathbed, the grand old man finally took a bow.
The world statesman, the first democratic president of South Africa, died late last night aged 95 years. His last minutes were spent in his home in Houghton, Johannesburg. He died in his sleep, with members of his closest family at his bedside.
President Jacob Zuma announced the death of Madiba on SABC TV just after midnight.
Mandela was discharged from hospital in Pretoria on September 1 and sent home by doctors after almost three months of admission. He had been admitted in early June for a recurring lung infection. “His condition remains critical, prompting speculations that his doctors may have tactfully surrendered to the reality of his imminent end and wants him to spend his remaining days amidst family and friends rather than in a cold hospital ward,” News Express had reported.
Crowds of mourners are meanwhile massing outside Mandela’s home while tributes are pouring in from all over the world.
All flags will be lowered to half-mast and remain that way until after the burial ceremony about ten days from now, according to SABC TV.
It said that Mandela’s epitaph may very well be the words that he has spoken at the funeral of his life-long friend, Walter Sisulu, on May 2003: “What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.”
•Photo shows the late Nelson Mandela.
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