United Nations Secretary-General Antonia Guterres has conveyed his sympathies to the Mandela family following the passing of Ambassador Zindzi Mandela earlier this week.

Guterres, who will deliver Saturday’s Annual Mandela Day Lecture, was speaking exclusively with SABC News to preview the speech.

Guterres says, “I just want to express my deepest condolences to the family, but to also the government and people of South Africa. This was unexpected and untimely and I believe South Africa has lost a distinguished diplomat and someone who of course is so closely linked to Nelson Mandela and to his life and to his absolutely unique contribution to not only SA, but to the world. So, it is a moment of sorrow and I want to fully share the sorrow of the South African people in the present moment.”

In the video below, the UN pays tribute to Zindzi Mandela:

Important figure

The African National Congress (ANC) described Mandela as an important figure in the fight for the country’s democracy.

ANC Spokesperson Pule Mabe says she will always be remembered for her speech to a mass gathering in Soweto in 1985, where she read a letter written by her father, refusing an offer by then President P.W. Botha to release him.

Mabe says, “Zindzi played a critical role in the old struggle days. You would remember her for the infamous letter that came from Mandela at the time, giving directives to the people of the ANC on what tasks had to be discharged. So she was a very important part of the ANC in many other ways. She has made sacrifices.”

In the video below, ANC National Spokesperson Pule Mabe speaks about the passing of Zindzi Mandela:

In the video below, Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Minister Lindiwe Sisulu remembers Zindzi Mandela.

Mandela will be laid to rest on Friday in Fourways, north of Johannesburg.