Wits University joins the world in mourning the passing of former president Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, the father of our nation and an international icon, who passed away last night – Thursday, 5 December 2013 at the age of 95. May his soul rest in peace.

In honour of the memory of Tata Madiba, the University’s flags are flying at half-mast across our campuses, and will remain so until he is laid to rest.

An informal gathering space has also been created in the foyer of the Great Hall where staff, students, alumni and friends of the University can pay personal tribute to Tata Madiba’s legacy. Staff, students and visitors can enter their thoughts and memories into a book of remembrance or leave their own flowers, candles, posters and messages on the steps of the Great Hall.

The informal gathering is due to commence from 13:15 to 14:00 on Friday. The book will remain open to the public for the duration of the national mourning period, and weather permitting, so will any flowers, candles or other memorabilia.

The public can also pay tribute to the late icon on the steps outside the entrance of the Wits Theatre in Jorissen Street, just a few meters from the Nelson Mandela Bridge in Braamfontein, where they can light candles, leave messages or flowers and pay personal tribute to him.

A public memorial service will be held at Wits next week, as well as an exhibition containing memorabilia, his archived papers and other special treasures. Details of the service and exhibition will be announced as soon as they become available. Rest in peace Tata Madiba.

Friday 6 December 2013 13:19