There is a stunned silence across the small village of Qunu in the Eastern Cape. Residents have stayed in doors watching the news unfold that their beloved Tata Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela Tata has passed away.

Many are enjoying the silence and remembering their great neighbour. Workers at the nearby Nelson Mandela Youth and Heritage Centre are hurrying around to lower the flags in respect. There is already a noticeable increase in security around the rural home of the former president.

In Soweto, residents have gathered at Vilakazi street, Orlando West to commemorate the life of Madiba. While many residents are still sleeping, a group of people is standing in front of the struggle icon’s house singing about his life.

Meanwhile, South African flags will be flown at half mast from today in honour of Madiba. President Jacob Zuma made the announcement.
“Our beloved Madiba will be accorded a State funeral. I’ve ordered that all flags of the Republic of South Africa be lowed to half mast and to remain at half mast until after the funeral.”

Mandela, who was 95-years-old, passed away in his sleep in his home in Houghton, Johannesburg. Members of his closest family were at his bedside.

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Friday 6 December 2013 07:48