The Nelson Mandela Museum in Mthatha in the Eastern Cape has joined multitudes of other South Africans in expressing their deepest shock in the passing of struggle stalwart,  Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.

Museum CEO Bonke Tyulu has described Madikizela-Mandela as a voice of reason who suffered at the hands of the apartheid security forces.

“She is one of the greatest leaders when it comes to our political space. We learnt a lot from her. Let’s allow her to rest peacefully. Time had come for her to leave. Mama Winnie had experienced a lot. The torture she received. Let’s continue doing what she would have liked us to do. She was a voice of reason and now that she has departed, we can only hope that those who were leading with her, would have learnt some lesson and because of the lesson they would have learnt, they would want us to continue where she left off.”

Meanwhile, leaders of various political parties including the Democratic Alliance’s (DA) Mmusi Maimane gathered outside the house of the struggle icon in Soweto to pay tribute to her.

Earlier National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete and Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces Thandi Modise said a memorial service would be held for Madikizela-Mandela at the legislature after her funeral.

Mbete and Modise will lead a multi-party delegation to the funeral which will take place in Fourways in the north of Johannesburg on Saturday April the 14th.

In addition the youth of Brandfort in the Free State – where Madikizela-Mandela spent her time in 1977 after the apartheid government banished her – have praised the late ANC stalwart for the role she played in the development of their small rural community.

Many of them believe it was through Mama Winnie that Brandfort is known today.

A youth says, “We have history here in Brandfort because of Winnie Mandela. Now we are healing with the Mandela people, Mandela family and the rest of South Africa because we love her. Until now we still love her and may her soul rest in peace.”

“We know that the youth of South Africa is hurting by the death of our mother and the things that we need to do is to take over where she left off and take it forward. We really salute her and we need to say we are hurt inside of us but as the nation we would like to offer the people of Mzansi and say we are sorry. May her soul rest in peace I thank you,” says another youth.

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