Former President Thabo Mbeki has arrived in Harare, Zimbabwe ahead of the funeral of former President, Robert Mugabe.
Mbeki is the first South African leader to arrive, with former President Jacob Zuma and President Cyril Ramaphosa also expected to attend.
Eleven sitting Heads of State will be attending the funeral service which takes place on Saturday at the National Stadium.
The burial ceremony is expected to take place at a later stage. Mugabe’s body is only expected to be interred at Heroes Acre in Harare after traditional ceremonies have been conducted at his home village.
Mbeki says he shared a special relationship with Mugabe.
“I could raise anything with the president and he would always treat me very seriously, and we would discuss anything and everything. So, it was a very important relationship for me, but also I think a very important relationship for our struggle. We spent a lot of time here in various parts of Harare, because this is where the leadership was, this is where we did all the planning and all the interaction with the party with the government. So, for me Harare is home.”