Hon Speaker of the National Assembly Mr Max Sisulu, hon Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces Mr Mninwa Mahlangu, the Acting Chief Justice, Judge Dikgang Moseneke, hon members of the National Assembly and the NCOP, hon premiers here present, the Sisulu and Mandela families, fellow South Africans, I am at once deeply honoured and sad to stand in this Joint Sitting of Parliament today, to give tribute to a leader whose name fires up human imagination with images of heroism, deep convictions and consistent striving for high ideals, our former President, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.
Remarkably, a week ago our nation buried Mr Reginald September, another liberation struggle luminary and former Member of Parliament. Today, we are also laying to rest the remains of yet another former Member of Parliament and a man with deep roots in South African liberalism, Mr Colin Eglin.
It would seem as if Madiba said to both Mr Eglin and Mr September, "you will never walk alone; I am right behind you". Now we hear that our nation has suffered yet another loss, the death of boxing legend, Jacob "Baby Jake" Matlala. Similarly, Baby Jake's passing on seems to point in the same direction, with him saying to Madiba, "you will never walk alone; I am right behind you".
I would rather view the deaths of all these South African giants in a positive light, not because this is the best way to lessen the effects of mortality, but because the four have made emphatic contributions to our nation that has left us the richer for it. We thank them for lives well lived.
The sheer weight of current historical experience is daunting; reflecting on the full sweep of history covering the life of Nelson Mandela is almost impossible. What is possible and desirable is to look at the meaning of Mandela's life for us as South Africans, Africans and indeed the whole world on which he has left a deep and enduring impression.
At this very moment our nation, and indeed the world, is undergoing an epochal experience where history-ending and history-making intersect in ways rarely seen before. As the one chapter is closing on the life of this lovable revolutionary, another is opening, prefaced by the question whether Mandela's remarkable contribution to human progress will simply pass into historical memory like that of great men and women before him, or whether it will occasion a leap of faith in those with the power to make a difference to the abject social experience of the overwhelming number of the world's people in whom Mandela's life was bedded.
This new chapter imposes imperatives on all of us, governments, continental and world bodies as well as private capital and all individuals who have the means, to work for a meaningful social emancipation of the peoples of the world.
Clearly the instinctual global outpouring of raw passion of sorrow, anguish, eulogies, encomiums, laurels and love unleashed by the death of Nelson Mandela has reaffirmed the deep common yearnings shared by humanity across the spatio-temporal divide.
As a global figure, Nelson Mandela's vision transcended the physical borders of our country. It permeated the fabric of global society, and is as true of our nation as it is of the entire world.
It was Mandela himself who taught us that: No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.
This transcendent universality unfolding at this point in history resonates with the poignant contention of yet another great freedom fighter and one of the inspiring figures of the 20th century, Dr Martin Luther King Jr, who reminded us that "our loyalties must transcend our race, our tribe, our class, and our nation; and this means we must develop a world perspective".
Nowhere is this world perspective in clearer evidence than right now, when global pathos is loosened in memory of the unifying figure of Nelson Mandela. In the true sense of the word, he belongs to all humanity, for to claim his ideals only for ourselves, to the exclusion of the rest of the world, would be an exercise in provincialism. Mandela's ideals saturate the face of the earth.
I am therefore honoured to stand here today to say my piece on the life of a man of whom the poet would have said, "in the modern sense of an old- fashioned word, he was a saint".
In equal measure, I am sad to have to bid farewell to this saintly being who considered himself "not a saint but a sinner who keeps on trying". While fallible as flesh and blood like the rest of us, he exhibited an inimitable human personality that defied the limitations of his age.
Looking back, we know now that it is within the realm of possibility to push back the frontiers of atavism, ignorance, prejudice and resentment as well as racialised and gendered poverty that cast the lot of many into misery.
The world over, his name has evolved into a metaphor; the name Nelson Mandela has entered the pantheon of history's sages, becoming a short hand for imperishable, trans-historical values that define human progress. This would explain why people of all backgrounds, nationalities, gender, age and regions of the world have suddenly succumbed to a sweeping feeling of sorrow that comes with the loss of a life that enriched the human experience.
In an age where "the best lack all conviction and the worst are full of passionate intensity", the figure of Nelson Mandela emerged in history, along with others, driven by a conviction to reclaim human dignity for the oppressed in a nation where history had imposed a common destiny among its people.
As mortality takes a hand in the matter, reminding us once again of the fragility of the human condition, the immortality of Nelson Mandela coevally thrusts itself forth with defiance, etching into historical consciousness the force of the meaning of his life. This immortality will echo down the ages.
So, I stand here aware that no language on earth is capacious enough to capture faithfully the depths of the pain fate has inflicted on us. It is a pain we all knew would come. Yet, not even the possession of foreknowledge could prepare us for the force with which this actuality has struck us. Equally though, it is the measure of Nelson Mandela's mystique that the same reason that engenders sorrow in us for his passing away equally fills us up with happiness for having shared a life with him.
Indeed we have a reason to be happy, as the spontaneity with which thousands across the globe celebrating Mandela's life shows. It is not in every generation that a figure of mythic proportions emerges from relatively unremarkable social conditions to stamp his imprint on the course of history.
As a metaphor his life mirrors a Copernican Revolution; a sense of Copernican Revolution that represents the path of reason and Enlightenment in the face of a primeval climate of racial oppression which, among other things, expressed itself in insufferable economic conditions for the majority of South Africans.
Yet, while historiography may struggle with issues such as whether it is individuals or the masses of people who make history, we, whose lives were lived through the historical events of the 20th century South Africa, know that the Mandela phenomenon is unthinkable outside its historical setting.
We know that Nelson Mandela was forged by the social conditions in which he was born and that his political consciousness was forged by the furnace of historical experience.
James Baldwin may very well have been anticipating the Mandela phenomenon when he memorably contended: "I am what time, circumstance, history, have made of me, certainly, but I am also, much more than that. So are we all."
Nelson Mandela's dream neither ended with the 1994 democratic breakthrough in our country, nor has it ended with his passing away. His dream of building unity, democracy, nonracialism and nonsexism only started to gain traction when for the first time all South Africans exercised the right to vote for the government based on their will.
The litmus test, however, is whether inheritors of his dream, heirs to his vision and adherents of his philosophy, will be able to make the dream for which he lived come to pass in the fullness of time. After the outpouring of grief, the celebration of and reflection on Nelson Mandela's life, we will have to answer the question as to how we advance towards that dream. If we succeed in bringing his dream to fruition as we should, that will inspire the rest of the world along the same path. A legitimate expectation that the world has of us is that if we can produce a Nelson Mandela we can bring about a progressive historical period where all the ills of the past recede into distant memory.
In consequence it is the obligation of all South Africans aspiring to lead society to ensure that on their watch the Mandela experience does not fizzle out into an episode without consequence, or a flash in the pan, but rather becomes a turning point in how the world advances social change.
Ultimately, as we move forward to the future the most enduring monument we can build to his memory is to strive for unity and human solidarity, to conquer the hidebound thought systems such as racism and sexism, to eradicate social inequalities, educate the masses, make health accessible to all, and uphold a human rights culture.
For us in South Africa, the challenge looms even larger when one considers the inevitable possibility that posterity will always look at us in the light of the Mandela experience. If we fail it will not make sense to future generations that while Mandela emerged from the mist of history to evolve into a rugged moral force that edged humanity a notch higher on the plane of civilisation, those who followed him either failed to live up to the dictates of the philosophy he advocated or simply destroyed his dream. A post-Mandela South Africa will be looked at in terms of how it fares in uprooting the legacy of the apartheid system at both the material and metaphysical level, while mindful of the symbiotic relationship between the historical material underpinnings of the apartheid legacy, and correspondingly, its ideological justification.
History will impose judgment on us in terms of whether we uphold the laws of the land, and fight scourges that rob the masses of our country to whose sociopolitical freedom Nelson Mandela had committed his life. This means showing intolerance to pathological conditions such as theft of public resources through corruption, abuse of political power and a host of other underhand means that rob everyday people of the meaning of freedom.
At another level, Mandela's uncompromising stance on the sanctity of our system of democracy, the primacy of the law, ethical orientation to governance, and generally carrying ourselves as models of propriety will continue to be a hard act to follow, but must nonetheless be followed to the letter.
There can only be two ways about moving our nation forward. A nation that adheres to the dictates of conscience, the dictates that put human beings at the centre of existence or the regressive form of existence in which all that came before dissolves into nothingness. In a classical sense we cannot have our cake and eat it. For most of his life, Nelson Mandela led and inspired millions to action, so that all South Africans could have access to this very Parliament in which we are sitting, to pass just laws which govern the lives of our people. The meaning of Nelson Mandela's legacy speaks to the conditions of the African people on the rest of our beloved continent with the same force.
Nelson Mandela represented progressive African nationalism that sought to give form and content to the aspirations of millions of poor African peasants, working classes and underclasses that face the enormity of social existence day by day.
The brand of African nationalism he represented sought to reclaim the African centre, to thrust the African to the pedestal of progress through self-reliance, through observing the principles that underpin modernity and through harvesting such principles for African progress.
The task that faces our continent is to let ordinary Africans lead the historical process, to define their destiny in social conditions ideal for progress.
It should revolt the rest of our continent and offend our sense of common decency, when the disproportionate number of humanity trapped in ignorance, poverty, squalor and beggarly conditions, and occupying an ontologically precarious state remain African, across generations.
At the centre of Mandela consciousness is the African claim to historical agency, a subjective will to recast social existence in terms that affirm our own development as a people with a great potential to contribute to the march of progress.
If we as Africans across the length and breadth of our continent are at all inspired by Nelson Mandela's life, it means a conscious and continued effort to entrench ideals of democracy in the African soil, so that democratic experience becomes second nature to the African mind.
There is enough under the soil and on the soil of our continent to provide for the needs of all Africans. All it takes to build a monument to the Mandela experience is to prevent African children from sinking into the depths of hopelessness by empowering them with freedom, a culture of human rights, education, access to health and space for their creative prowess to take full flight.
I would argue that the same level of Mandela consciousness needs to infuse the global thought systems. I would argue that at this level upholding Nelson Mandela's legacy should shake up those charged with the responsibility to assist with bettering life in the developing world. After scores of conferences over many years by august bodies of governance on the global level, we have to ask the question why many across the globe continue to wallow in conditions of misery.
After multinational companies have made stupendous profits from their commercial efforts on the African continent, a legitimate question arises as to why Africans remain sweated labour, pedestrians on matters of global commerce and frozen outside the global business mainstream, when their continent bears countless minerals beneath its soil. This may be the moment to rethink our ways and the nature of the challenges we face. It may well be so, if humanity is to take Nelson Mandela's journey a step further.
To consider Mandela's legacy on the global stage is to confront askew global power relations, the insidious insincerity that has numbed the senses of many men and women who command the type of power that can banish poverty from the midst of human life.
Why then do the majority of the world's people, the great unwashed, live in abject poverty when a fair distribution of the world's resources would not even lessen the material comfort of those who wallow in luxury at the top of social articulation?
I would submit that we cannot claim to follow in the footsteps of this inspiring leader when we have these shocking levels of poverty sitting cheek by jowl with the most fabulously dazzling material riches known to human history.
Just as we are all united in a frenzy of the Mandela experience, we can, if men and women of vision issue forth, change these odious conditions that face the rest of the world, to enable the emergence of a new human experience.
In conclusion, I wish to remind members of Milan Kundera's view that "the struggle of humanity against power, is the struggle of memory against forgetting". Our struggle is against forgetting as well as the approach we need to embrace to ensure that neither our generation nor subsequent generations forget our noxious past even as they work for social change. Going forward, the struggle of memory against forgetting entails not forgetting the need to change the political, social and economic character and how we relate with each other. Indeed, forgetting about the lessons of history leads to repetition of history's errors.
While Mandela's place in historical memory is cemented, we should never forget the meaning of the life he lived, a life that set a standard. Notably, we should never forget that his life was about the people above everything else.
Among the critical lessons we should draw from his life is that history is made by common people, of whom he was one. Never one for self- aggrandisement, he never attributed to his person any achievements, despite the catalytic role he always played.
Another distinguished South African, Peter Abrahams, captured Nelson Mandela's life with uncanny precision when he contended:
You can't walk alone. Many have given the illusion, but none have really walked alone. Man is not made that way. Each man is bedded in his people, their history, their culture, and their values.
Let me also express a word of gratitude to the Mandela family for having shared Nelson Mandela with South Africa, Africa and the rest of the world. We thank you for bearing the brunt of history with such fortitude, letting go of a loving husband, a doting father, a grandfather and an uncle, which in turn negatively affected your family in ways irrevocable. For all this, we thank you.
I thank you, hon Speaker, for this honour to address the Joint Sitting of Parliament to pay tribute to a human being that represented all that is lovely in human existence!
Hamba kahle, Madiba! Hamba kahle, Dalibhunga! Gorha lomzi wakwaMtirara! Delakufa lakwaNgubengcuka! [Farewell, Madiba! Farewell, Dalibhunga! Hero of Mtirara family! A valiant man of Ngubengcuka!]
It has been a life, such a life! I thank you for your attention. [Applause.]
Before I invite the next speaker to the podium, I wish to recognise the presence of Rev Mpho Tutu in the gallery, representative of Chapter 9 institutions and organisations of civil society.
Nonke namkelekile. [You are all welcome.]
Mr Speaker, Mr Deputy President, colleagues, we are gathered here today to pay our respects to the most revered person of our age. We are humbled and proud that, like him, we can call ourselves South Africans.
Today, our thoughts and prayers are with Madiba's immediate family here in the gallery with us today, his entire South African family and the global community that seeks to uphold the values he embodied. His death has united the world in grief. However, it has also united us in hope. He showed us that service and sacrifice do indeed leave the world a better place; human beings can leave the world a better place.
More has been written about Madiba than about any other person this century. So, what is there to add? The hon Deputy President spoke about our pain and we all feel that pain. It is truly remarkable to see that pain reverberating around the world like no other event could have, joining all of us together in experiencing it.
However, time will heal our pain. What must remain, and indeed what must grow within us, is a sense of the enormous responsibility we have inherited to continue his work. He has handed the baton to us and we dare not drop it.
I found the best summary of our responsibility in the words of Mrs Coretta Scott King, the widow of Martin Luther King Jr, who, like Madiba, became a global icon in the same cause. Mrs King said:
The struggle for freedom is never finally won. You earn it and win it in every generation.
Now, we know that if anybody earned freedom, it was Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. Indeed, he earned it for all of us. I was particularly struck by the word "earn" in that sentence, because we want to believe that freedom is a right. In an era full of demands, it is helpful to hear the word "earn" again. It reminds us to ask ourselves: How do we earn our freedom now?
Madiba's most famous phrase was: "It's a long walk to freedom", which is also the title of his autobiography, which I think many of us have returned to in the last few days. The long walk to freedom is not yet done. The destination is not yet reached. It never is. Ahead of us still lies a long walk to the kind of freedom that each South African can use to improve their lives. Freedom you can use is freedom fulfilled.
Today, we must face the fact, in this House, that millions of South Africans have formal freedoms but still cannot use it to improve their lives, because they lack the education, security, health and the means to do so. Our work in taking Madiba's legacy forward is to ensure that many more South Africans are able to use the freedoms that he bequeathed them and that they appreciate, like him, the discipline and the diligence required to use your freedoms. Otherwise we betray his legacy.
Of the millions of words written and spoken about Madiba in the last few days, there are none more famous than the words he spoke in the dock during the treason trial. We know them well.
I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons will live together in harmony with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for, and to see realised. But ... if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.
However profound and well known that passage is, it is also important to dig a bit deeper. Just a few short sentences above those words, in his most famous speech, are these:
Political division, based on colour, is entirely artificial and, when it disappears, so will the domination of one colour group by another. The ANC has spent half a century fighting against racialism.
He further said: "When it triumphs, as it most certainly must, it will not change that policy." These are profound words indeed.
The best tribute we can pay Madiba now is to ensure that our political debate focuses on issues of how best we can ensure that each South African child, whatever the circumstances of their birth, inherits freedom they can use. Let his death open that new chapter.
Lala ngoxolo, Tata. Asoze sikulibale. [Kwaqhwatywa.] [Rest in peace, Tata. We will never forget you. [Applause.]]
Mr Speaker, Chairperson of the NCOP, hon members, ladies and gentlemen, my respect goes to the Mandela and Sisulu families. Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, our father, the commander-in- chief of uMkhonto weSizwe, the volunteer in chief, the first democratic President of South Africa, seaparankwe [chief], the icon of the world has gone to join his ancestors. [Applause.]
Different constituencies in the North West sent different messages. This one went to my heart:
Die groot Madiba slaap. Ons is hartseer en bekommerd, maar ons gun hom sy rus. Ons hoop dat julle, die ANC, op sy spore sal bly om ons land veilig vir almal te hou. [The great Madiba is sleeping. We are heartbroken and concerned, but we feel he is entitled to his rest. We hope that you, the ANC, will follow in his footsteps to keep our country safe for everyone.]
The public servants in the North West also woke up on Friday morning and decided that they were not going to work. They dared me to fire them. They said they were taking a day off to honour the man who made it possible for them to have their names, jobs and dignity. Of course, we could never fire them for honouring the man they called their father. They dared and challenged one another to stay true to the values and leadership of the man they called their father. The mood in the North West is sad, but not hopeless. We are not lost. We may be disappointed that perhaps Madiba left before we could prove to ourselves and to him that the sacrifices he made were not in vain.
The lives of South Africans are changing every day for the better and the freedoms which my colleague has referred to - social, economic and political freedom, equality and unity - are actually being realised. We are proud that this rare kind of a human being - this exceptional African, wise and warm person, was our very own. We are proud that Madiba was the great but humble leader. He was not flawless. However, he is the one leader who taught us in the ANC that courage is actually your ability to rise up and strive for greater heights every time you stumble.
We drew inspiration from this leader who continuously involved himself in the struggle for all our communities. He loved children, protected the sick, showed compassion to the poor, and believed in education. He sought to ensure that education would be the weapon we use to eradicate poverty and inequality in our country. He knew that without the eradication of inequality and poverty, democracy would be a figment. He believed that traditional leaders needed to educate themselves so that they could serve their people better. That is why the North West is resolute that it will reopen the traditional leaders' training college. [Applause.]
In 2004 in Mumbai, President Nelson Mandela said, and I quote:
We owe a huge debt to future generations in the form of a better world. It has to be a better world - one in which the rights of every individual are respected, one that builds our aspirations for a good life, and one that enables every individual to optimally develop their potential.
He was committed to equality and democracy, despite repeated provocation, sometimes in this very House. He resisted answering racism with racism and hatred with hatred. He taught us the very simple things - to respect time, to walk and talk straight, and to be good listeners. He remembered all of us and our little burdens. There was no problem that you could ever have told Madiba that was too petty for him to remember or try to resolve. He dedicated his legal practice to fighting injustice and apartheid - placing himself at the disposal of the poor and the helpless.
Despite the 27 years of deprivation, he came out to lead the effort to build a united country. His resilience and integrity during the difficult years in prison, and through the negotiation processes, inspired us as the oppressed poor, the world throughout, to strive for unity and peace; to fight for our identities and to retain our cultures.
Indeed, Nelson left this world a better place. Perhaps our sadness stems from our uncertainty about our ability to emulate his confidence, humility, honesty, determination, strength and his vision. We must honour this extraordinary being - the sage of our age, whose life represents the triumph of the human will, justice, equality and progress. The big question is: As individuals and as a nation, are we ready to follow in his footsteps? The answer from the North West is: Yes, and yes again, because our actions will be motivated by the vision that drove his life - a life that was dedicated to giving and to transformation.
History will remember Rolihlahla as a champion for human dignity, freedom, peace and reconciliation. He was gentle with the poor and children. He was very firm and uncompromising in upholding discipline and the mandate of the people. All of us will remember his magnificent and remarkable personality during the Codesa negotiations.
In the ANC, we know that without his leadership, things might have gone horribly wrong; and yet this leader and great man never took personal glory. He taught us to consult and to respect collective leadership. We owe it to him, as his comrade and people of this country, to celebrate his life in a manner that will multiply and replicate his courage, humility, intellect, willingness to sacrifice, his capacity to forgive, and his wisdom to acknowledge the humanity of others.
Those of us who were privileged to become leaders in his time, will remember his insistence always to put the concerns of people first; and always to understand what their needs were. The women members in this House will remember that it was indeed the legacy of Tambo, Walter Sisulu and Mandela that, firstly, we got the 30% quota; and secondly, the benches in this House, for the first time, got increasing numbers of women. [Applause.]
The members who started off with Nelson Mandela in those five years will remember what the ANC Women's League used to call "the maltabella breakfast" - where we would come and justify why we were taking certain stances on women within this Parliament. It will be remembered by the likes of Comrade Tony and Comrade Lindiwe Sisulu. Again at the maltabella breakfast, we used to justify decisions and positions we adopted on issues pertaining to the security in this country.
Those who served with us in the sports and recreation committee will remember how we fought to keep the positions. At last, we only won when Madiba was convinced that it wasn't about what you like personally - it was not for you, and that whatever position and policy you adopted and advocated for, was for the greater good of other people.
We want to say thank you to this father of the nation. We would like to rededicate ourselves to his name. We want to make our country decent, caring and one that always upholds the law. Walking in the footsteps of Nelson Mandela is not negotiable. We want to salute the commander-in-chief, the prisoner, the boxer and the sportsman, but most importantly, the father of nations - in South Africa and across the world. Re a leboga, Madiba. [Legofi.] [We thank you, Madiba.] [Applause.]
Sepikara, lefu ke ngwetsi ya malapa ohle. Ha e le mona kajeno le etetse lelapa lena, ha re sa na mantswe a mangata. Re se re tlo leboha se etsahetseng.
Sepikara, ha re ke re hlahlobe ditsela tseo re di tsamaileng. Thaka ya Lumumba, mphato wa Xhamela, Zinzi le Ramokgadi, molaodi wa Vuyisile Mini le mabotho a lerumo la setjhaba, o re siile kajeno mme o se a robetse. Na le a nkutlwa? Mohlankana ya kileng a etsa mohlolo. Yare a kgutla komeng a betlilwe, a baleha ntho e monate, a thobela lenyalo. O se a re siile kajeno Madiba. Lefaufau le kileng la tjamelana le medimo ya mmuso wa kgethollo, boVerwoerd le Vorster le latetse boMahabane, Xuma le Luthuli. Utlwa! (Translation of Sesotho paragraphs follows.)
[Mr G P LEKOTA: Speaker, every family experiences death. As it has today paid a visit to this family, there is not much we can say. We are here to express gratitude about what has happened.
Speaker, let us reflect on the journey that we have taken. Lumumba's companion, a compatriot of Xhamela, Zinzi and Ramokgadi, Vuyisile Mini's commander and that of the nation's army, has left us and passed away. Do you hear me? He was a man who once did an unusual thing. After returning from the initiation school he ran away from a wonderful experience - he ran away from getting married. Today Madiba has left us. A tall, well-built man who once confronted the gods of the apartheid regime, Verwoerd and Vorster, has followed Mahabane, Xuma and Luthuli. Listen to me!]
We shall meet force with force.
O ile Madiba! Lentswe le kileng la omanya morena wa makgowa re le teng re mametse mme mala a kgwehla, mangole a thothomela, re itshwarella ka dipilara mme e mong a ba a itshwarella ka lekgowa la lepolesa, le thotse kajeno. E, Maafrika Borwa, mosuwehlooho e moholo wa sehlekehleke sa Robben, titjhere ya Tshwete le Moseneke, e se kwetse sekolo seo. E tsheletse mose ho noka ya Jordane. Ke Madiba e moholo, mohlankana ya kileng a tshela dinoka a ba a tshela le Lekwa mme a fihla a ema Gauteng.
Ha le ntse le mmametse le tle le utlwisise hore ke motswalle e moholo wa Motlotlehi wa Pele wa Basotho e leng Morena Moshweshwe, ya kileng a re motse ho ahwa wa morapedi, o ka nketsang ha e ahe letho. Le yena e ile yare ha a shebane le rona re le Maafrika Borwa o ile a re hopotsa mantswe a morena e moholo a re, kgotso ke kgaitsedi ya ka! Ha kgotso e le kgaitsedi ya ka, le tle le inahanele le le setjhaba sa Afrika Borwa, ba batsho le ba basweu, mefuta yohle e buang dipuo tse fapafapaneng hore kgotso ke eng ho lona. Ke re o ile Madiba, o re siile empa ha re dikgutsana! (Translation of Sesotho paragraphs follows.) [Madiba is gone! The voice that once shouted at the leader of the whites in our presence - we could feel our stomachs loosen, our knees were shaking, we steadied ourselves against pillars and someone even steadied themselves against a white policeman - is quiet today. Yes, South Africans, the great principal of Robben Island, the teacher of Tshwete and Moseneke, has shut down that school. He has crossed over the River Jordan. It is the great Madiba, the man who once crossed rivers and eventually crossed the Vaal River and settled in Gauteng.
As you are listening to me, you will understand that he was a friend of His Majesty, the First King of the Basotho, King Moshweshwe, who once said that a strong family is characterised by humility, and arrogance doesn't build a nation. Therefore when he was facing the struggles of his fellow South Africans, he reminded us of the words of the great king and said:
Peace is my sister! Therefore, if peace is my sister, you as the nation of South Africa, black and white, all kinds of people with different languages, what does peace mean to you?
I therefore say, Madiba is gone, he has left us, but we are not orphans.]
We must now face our future without this individual who was central to the issues directing our nation for a long time, but he has taught us well. He has left us examples and we are ready. So, we must take up the cudgels of struggle and soldier on with the task he gave us, to search for a better life for all. Halala, Madiba! [Praise to you, Madiba!]
HON MEMBERS: Halala!
HON MEMBERS: Halala!
Tselatshweu, mohale wa setjhaba! [Fare thee well, hero of the nation!]
May his soul rest in peace! [Applause.]
Hon Speaker, hon Chairperson of the NCOP, His Excellency the Deputy President, the hon Acting Chief Justice, Justice Moseneke, hon Deputy Speaker, hon Deputy Chairperson of the NCOP, hon premiers, members of the Mandela family and Sisulu family, hon Ministers and Deputy Ministers, fellow South Africans, it is with great awe that I stand here to say a few words after the passing away of the giant who was not only my leader in the ANC Youth League in the 1950s, but later a senior leader of our movement. I feel as overawed as I did when I stood up at Groutville to deliver the funeral oration at the funeral of my leader and mentor, iNkosi Albert Luthuli, at the request of his family and the excellent mission of the ANC.
Madiba was not only my leader but proved to be a real friend to me in all kinds of political weather that the country has gone through. Today, a nation mourns, the world mourns. The passing of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela closes a chapter in history that will be remembered as a time of struggle, freedom and great transformation. Yet, this chapter was only the preface, pointing towards the story that is yet to come.
As we continue to write the story of South Africa, let us be inspired by Mandela's legacy. Let us remember his passion for reconciliation, his capacity for forgiveness and his bold leadership. Let us also remember his honesty, which is what I want to talk about in my few minutes.
Mr Mandela's old-fashioned honesty was a value that my generation admired. I respected him for an admission he made in April 2002. He said:
We have used every ammunition to destroy Buthelezi and we have failed. He is still there. He is a formidable survivor. We cannot ignore him.
That admission, fellow South Africans, made many in his organisation quite unhappy. However, that was the kind of brutal frankness that positioned Mandela as a leader among his peers.
Even as a head of state, his honesty drove him to make admissions that few others at the helm of a country would dare to make. On 1 June 1995, standing at this podium, President Mandela spoke in this National Assembly about the Shell House massacre of 28 March 1994, in which eight civilians died when security at the ANC's headquarters opened fire. In total, 60 lives were lost and 300 were injured.
A year later, standing at this podium, in this Assembly, Mr Mandela said:
I gave instructions to our security that if they attacked the house, please you must protect that house - even if you have to kill people.
This admission that he himself had given the order distressed Mandela's comrades - I hear the murmurs which I expected. However, six days later he stood again in the National Assembly at this podium and reminded us all:
For reconciliation to have real meaning, the truth should be brought to light. As painful as it was for me to hear, my President's honesty about Shell House enhanced my admiration for him at the same time. He was a man of truth. Some people regard lying as a trademark of us politicians. He was not a petty politician like the rest of us; he was a great statesman.
I know that many still carry the wounds of Shell House and the multitude of wounds inflicted by the ANC's people's war. I too carry scars in my heart. However, there is a saying that has defined my life, and one that Mandela used to repeat as well: "The definition of a saint is a sinner who dies trying."
There is no one more deserving of forgiveness than Nelson Mandela, and few who epitomise forgiveness more. Now that the Lord has called him home, I urge those who carry wounds to forgive him. It is true, after all, that errare humanum est. In pouring out all the accolades that he richly deserves, let us also remember that he was a fallible human being like all of us. After all, even Christ the Son of God refused to receive the accolade that He was good. He said only God his Father could be called good.
Following the rupture between the IFP and the ANC in 1979, I endured vilification and pain. However, even at the height of the campaign to destroy me, Mr Mandela himself showed integrity, a very rare attribute these days.
In 1986 the Commonwealth Eminent Persons Group visited South Africa to assess the situation under apartheid and met with Mr Mandela on Robben Island. His Excellency General Olusegun Obasanjo, the former head of state of Nigeria, later recounted to me that they asked Mandela who I was because they were hearing so much about me. Mandela answered, "Buthelezi is a freedom fighter in his own right." [Interjections.]
This was an expression of rare honesty as much as an expression of our friendship, which endured for as long as I knew him. He expressed his confidence in me time and again - we are all witnesses - as we served in a democratic government, appointing me as Acting President in his absence. He was not obliged to do that. That is why there are murmurings even now, because you did not like it, but he did it. That is the quality of the giant we are honouring today.
My only regret, as we prepare to inter the remains of our beloved Madiba, is that his long-pursued vision of reconciliation is not complete. He charged those who came after him to take up the cause of reconciliation. Yet, he enters eternity with this dream still unachieved.
The dishonoured agreement of 19 April 1994, signed by Mandela, Mr de Klerk and me, still haunts our efforts. [Time expired.] [Applause.]
Sir, may I ask you a favour? May all the men please stand up? Ngicela amadoda onke asukume? Aah, Dalibhunga! [Ihlombe.] [May all men stand up? Aah, Dalibhunga! [Applause.]]
Speaker, 5 December 2013 will be remembered for centuries to come, as this day the world stood still. It did so because a giant amongst us had fallen. Tata Madiba was more than just our beloved country's heart. He was our collective soul. For each and every one of us, he provided the hope that tomorrow would be better, and for each and every one of us, he was our beacon, a guiding light towards the good and just. He bound us together in all our diversity, helped us through the pain that so many of us suffered for centuries before him. For this, I will always be grateful. Thank you, Tata Madiba.
Mr Speaker, my daughter Agatha was born on 14 April 1994. She was only 13 days old on the day South Africa held its first democratic election. For the first time in her life, she will be voting next year. When comforting her after paying her last respects to Madiba at a place of tribute, she wrote:
He did not even know us, but he worked to set us free. To an amazing man who set this world right, rest in peace, Nelson Mandela.
As a father and as a public representative, I ask myself what I will do to forward this legacy. The answer is in everything. Tata did it for us. He taught us that we must treat our children as our greatest commodity and do everything possible to provide them with the opportunities in life to succeed.
That is why he was the champion of the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund, an icon whose Nobel Prize resulted in a gift for charity. He taught us that our future will be better and brighter if we work together, hand in hand. We must never forget that reconciliation relies on you and me to make it work, so that we can achieve a truly nonracial society. He taught us that we must respond with love and forgiveness to those who hate and wish to do wrong in our society. Indeed, Madiba understood everyone and represented the best in humankind. He saw human beings as human beings, created equally, and never judged people on the basis of the colour of their skin. Despite all the fame and worldwide respect, power never made Madiba corrupt. Instead, after just one term as president, he stepped down. That is the role model that every one of us in this room should be proud of.
Whilst it is true that he is no longer with us today, his legacy lives on, and it is up to every South African to protect it, foster it, and make sure that every South African is able to experience the fruits of his efforts. Fellow members, let us celebrate his life and honour his global legacy in everything we do and everything we say. Every day should be a "Madiba Day".
I would like to end with my favourite from Tata, as a reminder to every member in this House and every South African watching on television today that our work is not done and that we must now ensure that we realise the vision that Mandela provided to us:
For to be free is not merely to cast off one's chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.
Hamba kahle, to the son of the soil. Long live Nelson Mandela, long live! Amandla! [Applause.]
Speaker, hon Deputy President, hon members, distinguished guests and fellow South Africans, at the outset, let me apologise for the absence of my president, Mr Bantu Holomisa, in today's Joint Sitting. Mr Holomisa was unable to make it, due to being busy with the funeral arrangements of our late former President, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.
Let me also take this opportunity, on behalf of the UDM, to join the millions here at home and abroad in extending our heartfelt condolences to the family, the ANC, and friends of the late former President of the Republic, Dr Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this time of grief. In fact, words seem inadequate to express how sorry we are for your loss.
Fellow South Africans, we are gathered here to undertake the sad duty of bidding farewell to an outstanding leader of the 20th century, the father of our nation, our struggle icon and the first democratically elected President of the Republic of South Africa. Tata Madiba, as he was affectionately known, spent 27 years in prison fighting gallantly, in order to ensure that you and I can enjoy the freedom and democracy that he and some of the members of his generation did not enjoy. To Tata and his generation, no price was too high for the liberation of the peoples of Africa. This turned him into a repository for all the hopes and aspirations of our people - a duty he discharged with distinction.
When Tata came out of prison, he displayed an amazingly high capacity for forgiveness, which, at times, brought a look of complete incredulity to the faces of those who believed that we did not have it in ourselves to transcend our divisive political past. Tata was, however, undeterred by this. He continued to epitomise the values of nonracialism, reconciliation and service to the people.
Under his sterling leadership, we demonstrated to the whole world that we too were more than capable of building a winning nation, united in our diversity.
In the words of former President Thabo Mbeki, Madiba pre-eminently represented a generation of the titans "that pulled our country out of the abyss and placed it on the pedestal of hope, on which it rests today".
Madiba was a man of integrity, whose humanity and compassion inspires us greatly and will continue to inspire us and future generations for many years to come. John Maxwell's apt description of integrity in his book, The 4 Pillars of Leadership, captures the essence of the values that Tata Madiba espoused during his lifetime, when he says:
Integrity commits itself to character over personal gain, to people over things, to service over power, to principle over convenience, to the long view over the immediate.
The outpouring of grief after Tata's passing, the likes of which are rarely seen, bears testimony to this and also clearly demonstrates that he was not only thought of as just the father of our nation but as one of the greatest leaders and outstanding heroes of the 20th century.
One of Tata's facets of leadership which also deserves mention here today was his willingness to listen and learn from people from all walks of life. Growing up in the deep rural parts of the Eastern Cape during Tata's term and watching him in action, I was always inspired by his ability to listen to opposing views and his courage to admit when he was wrong. We should learn these important values of tolerance and humility, as they will help us in our efforts to revive his and Archbishop Tutu's vision of building a rainbow nation.
The passing of Tata, sad as it is, provides us yet another opportunity to reflect on the progress made and the distance we have come. It should remind us that our hard-won liberty is built on a contrasting tale of men at their most evil and most heroic and where, like everything else in life, the good emerged victorious over the bad. This is one victory that we must never betray or squander. In this regard, the best present we can give to Tata Madiba is to preserve his legacy, by espousing his values and ensuring that the torch of freedom and democracy, for which he courageously fought, continues to burn. In his eloquent words, we should ensure that "the sun shall never set on so glorious a human achievement".
Lala ngoxolo, Yem-yem, Ngqolomsila, Sophitsho, Vela Bambhentsele, Madib' iindonga. Ugqatso lwakho ulufezile. Aah, Dalibhunga! Aah, Dalibhunga! Ndiyabulela. [Rest in peace, Yem-yem, Ngqolomsila, Sophitsho, Vela Bambhentsele, Madib' iindonga. You've run your race. Aaah, Dalibhunga! Aaah, Dalibhunga! Thank you.]
The DEPUTY MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY AND FISHERIES: Speaker, on behalf of the FF Plus, I wish to express my sympathy with former President Nelson Mandela's wife and his family present here today. As Christene glo ons volgens Psalm 146 om nie op prinse te vertrou nie, maar dat alle mag, ook die mag van leiers, van God af kom.
As oud-president Nelson Mandela vandag hier was, soos ek hom ken, sou hy waarskynlik beswaar gemaak het teen die wyse waarop van hom 'n ikoon en 'n bo-menslike wese gemaak word. Hy was baie gesteld daarop om in gesprekke altyd daarop te wys dat hy deel van 'n span is en nie alleen opgetree het nie. (Translation of Afrikaans paragraphs follows.)
[As Christians we believe, in accordance with Psalm 146, not to rely on princes, but that all power, including the power of leaders, comes from God.
If ex-president Nelson Mandela were here today, as I knew him, he would in all probability have protested against the manner in which he is being held up as an icon and a supernatural being. During conversations he put great store on it and he always pointed out that he was part of a team and never acted on his own.]
With the above taken into consideration, however, no one can deny the impact that Mr Mandela made on South Africa and on the world. The reaction following his death surely confirms this.
When we were young, we all had dreams as to how we would change the world and how we would put our stamp on it. It is given to few persons to live out their dreams in their lifetime. Nelson Mandela succeeded in doing exactly this. Against big odds, he had realised the vision he had as a young man.
Can one person make a difference in politics? In my youth, I was involved in many debates about this. My argument was that politics is too complicated with too many variables for one person to make a real difference. Sir, I was wrong. One person at the right place, at the right time and with the right approach can make a huge difference. I still believe in this today as far as my own career is concerned. Mr Mandela and I disagreed about many issues but he proved this statement to be true. He not only had an influence on South Africa, but on the whole world - as we can see with the funeral at the moment.
My eerste ontmoeting was in die negentigerjare toe President Mandela my genooi het vir 'n gespreksontbyt met hom alleen. Dit was sy werkswyse, soos jy sal weet. Na die ontbyt en die uurlange gesprek was my opsomming dat vriendelikheid en nederigheid sy sterkste eienskappe is, maar dat jy nie vir 'n oomblik ook sy klipharde wil om sy eie doelwitte te bereik, moet betwyfel nie. Die sentimentele sagte-oupa beeld wat mense wat hom nie ken nie van hom het, is in hierdie opsig waarskynlik misleidend.
Hoe beskryf 'n mens mnr Mandela? Mandela, die jong aktivis, wat vir die ANC- leiers s dat geweld al is wat oor is en toe in die tronk beland? Of die middeljarige Mandela wat Afrikaans leer ten einde die Afrikaner te verstaan? Of die ouer, wyser Mandela wat ons by die onderhandelinge leer ken het? (Translations of Afrikaans paragraphs follows.)
[My first meeting was during the nineties when President Mandela invited me to a personal breakfast during which we had discussions. That was the way in which he operated, as you will know. After the breakfast and the discussion of an hour, I concluded that friendliness and humility were his strongest characteristics, but that you should not for one moment doubt his iron will to achieve his own objectives. The meek and sentimental image of a grandfather, which people who did not know him have of him, is in this case probably misleading.
How does one describe Mr Mandela? Mandela, the youthful activist, who told leaders of the ANC that violence was all that remained and then ended up in jail? Or the middle-aged Mandela who studied Afrikaans in order to understand the Afrikaner? Or the Mandela, older and wiser, whom we got to know during the negotiations?]
Which two words would describe him the best? That is very difficult. I would say: dignity in adversity. He also had the two essential qualities which are necessary for genuine statesmanship - what I call that rare combination of the idealistic, on the one side, and then the severely practical, on the other. A leader who acts merely to be popular is not a real leader. A real leader must be prepared to act against the majority, because he or she knows that the majority are wrong and he or she must provide leadership to them in doing so. Surely, this is not always easy. I remember how Mr Mandela addressed 40 000 people in a stadium, and reprimanded them severely because they did not sing the Afrikaans part at the end of the anthem.
From the reaction from ordinary people following his passing away, it appears that his popularity lay largely in his humane approach on a personal level. One Sunday afternoon, there was a call from Mr Mandela to my home. He did not want to speak to me, but to my daughter. My daughter had been chosen as the dux student at her university and a short report about this had appeared in the Sunday newspaper that morning. Mr Mandela just phoned to congratulate her.
I started by stating that it is given to few men to live out their dreams in their lifetime. Nelson Mandela succeeded in doing this. The question is: What were these dreams of Mr Mandela? He most probably summed it up best in his address in court in 1964, and let me quote it here:
I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to see realised. But, my lord, if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.
He also said:
Never ... shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another.
The question for all of us following the passing away of Mr Mandela is: To which extent has South Africa achieved these goals?
Today is not a day for politics, but my observation is that we are busy repeating some of the mistakes of the past - this time, perhaps, only in reverse. The test in all debates in the future should be whether these dreams of Mr Mandela will become more or less real for South Africa. Perhaps we should all remember Edmund Burke's truth, which is also true of Mr Mandela: "All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing."
Mr Mandela ... mooi loop, mnr Mandela. Dankie. [Applous.] [... go well, Mr Mandela. Thank you. [Applause.]]
Hon Speaker, hon Deputy President ... [Interjections.]
Hon members, order! I know you are all happy to see Rev Meshoe back in Parliament ... [Laughter.] ... but please listen to him!
Proceed, hon member.
... the Mandela and Sisulu families, hon members and esteemed guests, it was indeed an honour to serve as a Member of Parliament under the leadership of former President Nelson Mandela when he became the first democratic President of the new South Africa in 1994. I concur with all the wonderful tributes and accolades that were given to him this afternoon. I want to focus, however, on some of his ideals and values I hope and pray that South Africans, particularly political leaders, will not lose sight of.
What stands out the most for me of those values was the capacity that he had to forgive. After he was released from prison together with other political prisoners, many expected revenge, confrontation, and in some areas, a bloodbath. Because he was a great leader, he chose to negotiate a peaceful settlement with his former oppressors.
As progress was made, one of the most prominent leaders of both the ANC and the SACP, Chris Hani, was assassinated. Fear and uncertainty filled the air. This great man, who had a vision for a peaceful, prosperous and united nation, stepped forward and called for calm, while some of his comrades were questioning the sincerity and commitment of the former apartheid government to a peaceful settlement. Violent confrontation was averted because of the intervention of this great man we are honouring today.
I sincerely believe that the capacity that uTata Mandela had to forgive was given to him by God Almighty in answer to the prayers of his people, who wanted to see a peaceful settlement in the country. Let us not forget that when some people were talking about war in the country, a war that even members of the international community expected would break out, churches in South Africa and in other parts of the world were praying for peace. That is why the peaceful elections of 1994 were called a miracle. At the centre of all this, when we were praying, was this man of peace called Nelson Mandela. That is why it is proper for us to say today: Thank you, Lord, for giving us Madiba.
To his critics, I must admit that on many occasions Mr Mandela correctly said that he was not a saint. He made mistakes, just as we all make mistakes. I did not always agree with him, but that did not change the fact that he was a great man, a great unifier, a bridge builder that all South Africans should honour and pay their respects to, and learn from.
UTata Mandela had one distinct characteristic that separated him from all the other presidents we have had so far. This was his respect and special way of dealing with leaders of opposition parties in Parliament. Whenever he hosted visiting heads of state and other important dignitaries, he would introduce us individually to his guests, mentioning us all, each by name. On a number of occasions, he would call leaders of opposition parties in Parliament to ask for their opinions. He would tell us how much he valued our opinions and contributions. He had a unique way of making one feel valuable and special.
I will always appreciate his commitment to forgiveness, his compassion, and his commitment to reconciliation, peace and nation-building. Many township people, who did not like rugby because it was associated with an oppressive regime, changed their attitudes the day they saw Madiba wearing the Springbok jersey on 24 June 1995, when the Springboks played against the All Blacks. The All Blacks coach, Laurie Mains, is reported to have said:
The entire stadium was electrified at the sight of South Africa's first black President sporting a garment that was indelibly associated with the apartheid regime.
Today, many black people wear the Springbok jersey with pride because they saw their hero, Mr Mandela, wearing it the day the Springboks became the 1995 Rugby World Champions. Mr Mandela influenced us all in many ways. That is why it is befitting for all of us today to be grateful to have been blessed with a leader of the stature of Mr Mandela. He showed the world that it is possible to forgive, regardless of how you were humiliated. It is possible to forgive, regardless of how deep the pain is. It is possible to hold hands with your former oppressor and enemy, reconcile with him, and move forward in unity for the sake of the nation.
The best way to honour his legacy, as South Africans, is never to lose these Bible-based values: love, compassion, forgiveness, reconciliation, respect, unity and nation-building. He embraced them all. God bless, heal and comfort the Mandela family. God bless South Africa. Thank you. [Applause.]
Hon Speaker, the Chairperson of the NCOP, hon members and the Mandela and Sisulu families, if there had been the best of times and the worst of times in South Africa and the world, this is the worst of times, while the best was when he was around. If there is a period of incredulity, this is the period. Much as we know that death is the way of all flesh, we South Africans find it hard to believe that former President Mandela has been called to glory.
Words cannot suffice to express the emptiness, dryness, sadness and paralysis that have befallen the country, though we knew it had to happen. We continue to pinch ourselves to find out if it is true. This is one man, we believe, who deserves to be immortalised, not only in thought, but also in flesh.
UBawo [Mr] Nelson Mandela was the darling of all young people. He was able to relate to all people across the colour spectrum, around the globe and back home across political lines. He was a father to all.
President Nelson Mandela had a fantastic memory. He could remember events and names of people as if he lived with them daily. I was introduced to him once at the election centre in Pretoria. The two subsequent times we met thereafter, he called me by name and asked how Kgosi Mangope was doing.
His humility belied the ruthlessness in him if he was pushed too far. No one can forget how he came down like a ton of bricks on the then President De Klerk at the first sitting of the Convention for a Democratic South Africa, Codesa, but was prepared to continue negotiating with him and even to work alongside him in the Government of National Unity.
The same Nelson Mandela traversed the length and breadth of this country persuading all leaders of all formations to rise up and build a new South Africa. Those who spurned his invitation never knew what hit them thereafter. On behalf of the UCDP, I salute this indefatigable intellectual who sought to inspire confidence, leadership and political wisdom.
It will not be out of step to compare President Nelson Mandela to his namesake, Horatio Nelson. When the British troops were under siege in the battle of Trafalgar and the king sent a white flag for him to surrender, he put his telescope on the blind eye and said, "I see no order to surrender." He then coaxed his troops to keep on fighting.
In similar fashion, when most people were on the verge of accepting apartheid as a fait accompli, Nelson Mandela said, "No." Here it is, we are about to complete 20 years under black majority rule and the heavens have not caved in. He stood up and spoke out against domination.
Let us take solace in what David, the psalmist, says in Psalm 30: "There will be sorrow in the evening but joy in the morning." This is our evening and as sure as the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, South Africa will be a land and place of joy and happiness in the future, thanks to Tata Mandela.
Our commiserations go to the family, aBathembu bonke bephelele [the Thembu tribe as a whole], the government of the Republic of South Africa, his political fort, the ANC, and all who lived in his shadow. Lala ngoxolo Mandela omde. Aah, Dalibhunga! [Rest in peace, Mandela. Aah, Dalibhunga!]
The next speaker will be the Chief Whip of the NCOP who will be speaking from her seat. Will you please raise your hand so that the camera crew can see you? There she is. Can you see her? Proceed, hon Chief Whip.
UMBHEXESHI OYINTLOKO WEBHUNGA LESIZWE LAMAPHONDO: Sihlalo, Somlomo, Sekela Mongameli naBaphathiswa, malungu eziNdlu zombini zePalamente, lusapho lakwaMandela nelakwaSisulu naye wonke umntu olapha, namhlanje sizekukhumbula kwaye sibhiyozela ubomi bentsika exhathise ngayo i-ANC kunye nabantu boMzantsi Afrika. Siyazi ukuba siseza kuqhagamshelana naye ngejelo lomoya ekunye nezinye iinkokeli zomzabalazo wethu.
NjengoKhongolose, nabemi boMzantsi Afrika sizingca ngokuba ukhe wabelana nathi sonke ngobomi bakho. Sibulela ngakumbi ngendlela olilwe ngayo idabi lokuphelisa ucalucalulo nomkhethe kwilizwe lethu.
NjengoEnoch waseBhayibhileni, wena wahamba noThixo, nangoku awufanga, undulukile. Ingathi unguSimon wakudala yena wathi uyamndulula umkhonzi wakho enoxolo mnini ntozonke ngokwelizwi lakho ngokuba amehlo am ayibonile inkululeko yoMzantsi Afrika. Awanelanga kukuma phezu kwentaba yeNebho njengoMosisi koko usingenisile eKanana. Usebenze ngomzimba ongenamikhinqi, wathi isahlulo samandla akho wasipha uHelen Joseph, uRuth First, uLillian Ngoyi nezinye iinkokeli. Khange ube namona, uyidumisile le nkonzo yakho i-ANC. Ube yi-ankile yombutho wesizwe, wayintsika yoMkhonto Wesizwe. Usifundisile ukuba njengoko kubhaliwe, zesingabi nambutho wumbi ngaphandle kwe-ANC, yona yasikhupha ematyotyombeni yasifaka ezindlwini. [Kwaqhwatywa.] Wena wenza into enkulu, eyokubuyisela isidima somntu ontsundu, wathi abo bebephelelwe sisidima, ingakumbi abacinezeli bethu, wababuyisela sona futhi wabafundisa ukuba singabantu sonke.
Sopitsho, wena ubululanyelwe nayinkohlakalo yolwandlekazi lwe-Atlantiki, nelanga laseDrakenstein alikutshisanga, imimoya yeKapa yakomeleza! Yiyo loo nto amakhosikazi eli lizwe lethu lihle kangaka esithi "Phumla ngoxolo, ukwenze konke!" Abantwana bethu balufumana felefele unyango, siyalingana akukho lucalucalulo ngokwesini, imfundo iyafikeleleka kumntu wonke ngaphandle kocalucalulo. Yonke le nto uyenze ungenamona, nanzondo, udumisa umbutho wethu.
Kubantu boMzantsi Afrika uMadiba uthi "Yivani ezi ndaba, sinalo ibali lobomi obungcono elibubungqina bokuba yi-ANC kuphela umkhululi wabantu kwidyokhwe yengcinezelo nobukhoboka. [Kwaqhwatywa.] Yi-ANC kuphela enika ithemba lokuba nawe wena usahluphekileyo le mini iyeza nakuwe." [Kwaqhwatywa.]
Njengoko kwezinyanga zokugqibela ubuwedwa esixovulelweni, mawakwamkele ngovuyo amaqabane akho, oo-Oliver Tambo, Walter Sisulu, Joe Slovo, Albertina Sisulu, Lillian Ngoyi nabanye endingabakhankanyanga. Nesebe lakho selabulungisayo ubulungu bakho kuKhongolose wangasentla.
Isithsaba sakho sikulindele ngaphesheya, Madib' omde, wena Sithwalandwe! Intonga yakho yobugorha, nomkhonto wakho ziya kuhlala kwezi zakhiwo zale Palamente zibe ngumthombo wamandla nakwabanye oomongameli be-ANC belixa elizayo njengoko eli lizwe lethu lingasayi kuze liphinde liphathwe ngabanye abantu. Amandla! [Kwaqhwatywa.] (Translation of isiXhosa paragraphs follows.)
[The CHIEF WHIP OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PROVINCES: Chairperson, Speaker, Deputy President, Ministers, members of both Houses of Parliament, members of the Mandela and Sisulu families and everybody present here, we are here today to commemorate and celebrate the life of a pillar of the ANC and of the people of South Africa. We know that we are going to communicate spiritually with him and other leaders of our struggle.
As the ANC and the people of South Africa we are all proud to have shared your life. We are particularly grateful for the manner in which you engaged in the fight against discrimination and injustice in our country.
Like Enoch in the Bible, you walked with God. You are not dead, you have departed. You are like Simon the biblical figure, who said:
Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen the liberation of South Africa.
You didn't just stand on the mountain of Nebo like Moses, but you led us into Canaan.
You worked tirelessly, and you gave a portion of your energy to Helen Joseph, Ruth First, Lillian Ngoyi and other leaders. You were not envious, but you sang the praises of your congregation the ANC. You were an anchor to the ANC and a pillar of uMkhonto weSizwe. You taught us that, as written, we must not belong to any organisation other than the ANC, which took us out of shacks and put us in houses. [Applause.] You did something wonderful; you restored the dignity of a black person as well as the dignity of our oppressors, and taught them that we are all human beings.
Sophitsho [Madiba], you brought calm even to the stormy waters of the Atlantic Ocean, survived the high temperatures of the Drakenstein, and the strong winds of the Cape made you strong! That is why the women of this country say, "Rest in peace, you have done it all!" Our children get free medical care; we are all equal and there is no gender discrimination; education is accessible to all without discrimination. All of this you have achieved without being envious, without bearing grudges and in the name of our organisation.
To the people of South Africa Madiba says, "Listen to this message; we have a story of a better life, which is a proof that only the ANC is the liberator of the people from the yoke of oppression and slavery. [Applause.] It is only the ANC that brings hope to those who are still living in poverty, that their time will come too." [Applause.]
Because in the past few months you suffered alone, let your comrades, such as Oliver Tambo, Walter Sisulu, Joe Slovo, Albertina Sisulu, Lillian Ngoyi, etc, welcome you with joy. Your branch has already facilitated your membership of the ANC up above.
Your crown is awaiting you, Madiba, Sithwalandwe! Your stick of bravery and your spear will remain in the precincts of Parliament and be a source of strength to future ANC presidents as this country will never be ruled by other people again. Power! [Applause.]]
Hon Speaker, hon Chair, Your Excellency the Deputy President, all protocol observed, the Mandela family and the Sisulu family, indeed we must thank God for blessing us with such a great leader as Tata Madiba. South Africa, Africa and the world has lost a father, a leader and indeed the greatest South African that ever lived. There is no doubt about it. We can't even argue about it. He was the best South African who ever lived. Our deepest condolences go to the Mandela family and sincere gratitude for sharing Madiba with us. He has left an indelible mark on all of us.
Hon Speaker, let me start this tribute with the words of the great man himself when he said, and I quote:
What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.
Again he said:
When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace. I believe that I have made that effort and that is, therefore, why I will sleep for the eternity.
That was Madiba himself.
Tata Madiba understood the power of forgiveness because it is through forgiveness and reconciliation that he could unite and lead this diverse nation. All of us sitting in this House today have peace in our hearts because of Madiba. He taught each and everyone that sits here today that you are not a better person than the next person, but that we need each other. That's Madiba. He made ordinary people feel great. When you came into his presence he would make you feel that you were his leader. That is the leader that we had in South Africa. He was someone who was respectful and was respected. It is the first time in my life that someone could be put in prison for 27 years and when he comes out says, let's reconcile and forgive. That's a gift from God. It's not humanity. That's a gift from above.
Let me close by saying that it amazes me that a man of such humble beginnings could change so many people's lives only through forgiveness. Surely we will miss him, but we will remember you in our daily lives because this nation owes you to strive for a better life for all South Africans - not only for certain South Africans, but for all South Africans.
Lala ngoxolo, Tata. [Rest in peace, Tata.] I thank you. [Applause.]
Mr Speaker, Deputy President and members of the Mandela and Sisulu families, there are many sorrows in life, and one of the greatest sorrows that South Africans and the international citizenry would not like to endure, is the sorrow of Madiba's passing away. As we continue to experience emotional pain and sorrow, the MF is deeply saddened, particularly because of the close and long friendship between Madiba and Rajbansi.
When I met Madiba I was humbled by his spirit of humility when he said:
I have personally come to thank Amichand, as he is called "the Tiger", for his contribution to South Africa's politics.
It is an undisputed fact that Madiba's honour was derived from fighting for his people and putting his country first. On behalf of the MF, I convey heartfelt condolences and messages of strength, courage and fortitude to the Madiba family and friends. Further, in the presence of the Madiba family here today, I want to acknowledge all that Madiba did for each and everyone here in so many different ways, unfailingly and uncompromisingly.
Mr Deputy President, your elevation under the guiding light of Madiba's teachings, and therefore your emulation, is an honour with merit of its own. You bring comfort and confidence to the nation in this time of bereavement. Our sincerest sympathy also goes out to the ANC for the loss of a world icon who is an irreplaceable, impeccable and remarkable leader and father of our democracy. The relationship between India and South Africa was cemented because of the unique calibre of Madiba and Gandhi. Madiba's in-depth knowledge, indescribable determination and immeasurable sacrifices delivered us all from the horrific apartheid regime.
President Mandela's preparedness to forgive, even after 27 years of incarceration and after the murder of the renowned leader Chris Hani, diffused a potentially explosive situation in the country. The fearless and courageous anti-apartheid activist and freedom fighter said:
South Africans must recall the terrible past so that we can deal with it, forgiving where forgiveness is necessary but never forgetting.
As the isiZulu proverb so accurately says: Umuntu umuntu ngabantu. [I am because you are.] This means we are who we are because of other people. This Parliament in its current form, yes, indeed, has come about precisely as a result of his 27 years on Robben Island. From humble beginnings as a prisoner he was elevated to the highest office of the land, after decades of white minority rule, and subsequently revered as the architect of peace and reconciliation. He touched the hearts of millions, black and white, with his warm and caring personality, especially the children and the youth, ensuring peace and justice for all.
To Madiba's family we express sincere gratitude for giving us Tata, who made unbelievable and incredible sacrifices for the freedom of our country and the easing of the sufferings of the broad masses at grassroots.
To Tata Madiba: You ran a good race. Yes, indeed, you leave behind a legacy infused with honesty, integrity, dignity and above all tenacity. The Lord has blessed some people to walk the path of sufferings on this earth, and Madiba was one of the chosen ones that changed those sufferings into the freedom that we all so profoundly enjoy today.
I want to echo his sentiments:
Never, never and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another and suffer the indignity of being the skunk of the world.
Akekho ofana nawe, Tata Madiba. Lala ngoxolo. [Tata Madiba, you are incomparable. May your soul rest in peace.]
May peace be upon Tata Madiba until the grace of Almighty God. May his soul rest in peace in the high heavens. Long live the spirit of Tata Madiba. Long live the spirit of Rolihlahla Mandela. Long live the spirit of Tata Rolihlahla Mandela, the one and only father of democracy. Long live! [Applause.]
Mhlonishwa Somlomo woMkhandlu kaZwelonke, mhlonishwa Sihlalo woMkhandlu kaZwelonke weziFundazwe Baba uMahlangu, oNdunankulu beziFundazwe abakhona phakathi kwethu, abaholi bamaqembu aphikisayo ePhalamende likaZwelonke, ngithi sihlangene lapha namhlanje sizobhonga emswanene ngokudlula emhlabeni kweqhawe, uBaba wesizwe, uDkt uNelson Mandela.
Mina njengomuntu okholelwa edlozini ngikholelwe ukuthi uma lithi ukusinethanetha ekuseni namhlanje bekubonakala ukuthi bekuyisibusiso ukuba khona kuka Tata uMandela phakathi kwethu. Noma bengikuqonda kahle ukuthi emndenini wakwaMandela ukuthi izinhlungu abakuzo zingakanani ngokuhamba emhlabeni kuka Tata uMandela ngoba ukuhamba komuntu akulula, kuyakhalisa. Ngiyabakhalisa oMama bakaMandela, ngiyayikhalisa iNkosi yesizwe sakwaMandela, uZwelivelile Mandla Mandela, ngoyisemkhulu wayo ebimthanda.
Nathi njengesizwe sisonke sibhubhile, safa olwembiza ngokuhamba kwaleli qhawe. Izinkulungwane zabantu emhlabeni ziyohlala zimkhumbula uBaba uMandela ngemisebenzi yakhe ayenzele izwe laseNingizimu Afrika. Akukho noyedwa lapha endlini obengagqunywa ejele iminyaka engamashumi amabili nesikhombisa abuye alale embhedeni owodwa nalowo muntu owayemgqume iminyaka engamashumi amabili nesikhombisa ejele, ngoba lowo muntu wayeyisitha sakhe soqobo.
Ngibonga abantu abadala abalapha endlini ababemqonda kahle engingabala kubo uMntwana weNkosi kanye noBaba uMlangeni ngoba bona babemqonda kahle ukuthi indlela yakhe yayiqonde kuphi ekwenzeni izinto ayezenza.
Ngibuye ngithi laphaya kwelikababa omkhulu selibhubhele abantu bakababomkhulu ubusuku nemini. Ngiyakhumbula ngesikhathi kade ephuma ejele ngomhla wama-25 kuNhlolanja lapho afika khona kwenye yezinkundla zemidlalo eThekwini wafika washo ukuthi: Uma unesibhamu sakho, unomkhonto wakho, unakho konke okungahle kugile imikhuba kufanele uhambe uyokulahla olwandle.
Mangibonge futhi Mageba ukuthi uyakuveza ukuthi uBaba uMandela ubengumholi wakho futhi njengomuntu omdala kuwe kufanele abe ngumholi wakho, nokuthi washo elaphaya esigodlweni ekhaya wathi: Noma ngabe kuthiwa niphambene kangakanani kodwa uma senibizene, nahlala phansi, uyakwazi ukuthi umbone.
Ngiyabonga ukuthi mhla ziyi-13 kuNcwaba ngonyaka we-1993 wahamba wayokufakazela ukuthi udlame ulunyanya kangakanani laphaya endaweni yaseThokoza lapho isizwe esasibhubha khona. Ngeke ngikwazi ukusho ukuthi umuntu oyedwa angakwazi ukwenza umehluko, akwazi ukukhuluma nabanye abantu ukuthi mabayeke imihlola.
Ngithi-ke mhlonishwa Sekela likaMongameli wezwe kusezandleni zenu ukuthi uBaba uMandela lapho elele khona ukuthi iphupho lakhe lokuxolelana nokubuyisana kufanele nilifeze ngoba ngeze saphambana ngesidingo sokuthi nje siphambene ngemibono yokuthi leli phupho sizolifeza kanjani sekuyofuneka sibe yizitha zangunaphakade.
Kodwa kusemahlombe enu ukuthi nimele amaqiniso nokuthi konke enicabanga ukuthi kungenzeka kufanele kwenzeke. Mangibonge futhi inhloko yombuso wobandlululo uMnu de Klerk owayemi kuyo leNdlu, emi khona la engime khona esho ethi: Uzivula zonke izinhlangano zombusazwe imilomo nokuthi bonke abasekudingisweni babuyele ekhaya, wase encoma ukuthi wena weSilo wenze umehluko ngokwazi ukumeluleka ukuze aphume nalelo qhinga ngoba vele ukwelulekwa yikona okukwenza ukuthi ukwazi ukwenza umuntu ahambe indlela eqondileyo.
Ngithi emndenini wakwaMandela, bakithi anibhubhelwanga nodwa. Sibhubhelwe sonke njengesizwe. Egameni labantu bakababamkhulu ngiyakhala, ngiyababaza ngithi: Ulale kahle Madiba futhi uhambe kahle. Ngikhalela isizwe sabaThembu, ngikhalela inhloko yezwe neSekela layo, kanye nabo bonke abasenhlanganweni ebiholwa uTata uMandela. Siyabonga mphathisihlalo. [Ihlombe.] (Translation of isiZulu paragraphs follows.)
[Prince M M M ZULU: Hon Speaker of the National Assembly, hon Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces Mr Mahlangu, premiers in our midst and leaders of opposition parties in the national Parliament, we are gathered here today to mourn the passing of the father of the nation, Dr Nelson Mandela.
As someone who believes in ancestors, when it rained this morning it was an indication to me that Mr Mandela's presence amongst us was indeed a blessing to us. I however understood the pain that the Mandela family was experiencing for losing him, because it is never easy to lose a family member; it is always a very sad time. I send my condolences to his wife and his ex-wife. I also send them to the chief of the Mandela clan, Chief Zwelivelile Mandla Mandela, for losing his beloved grandfather.
The whole nation has lost its national hero. Mr Mandela will always be remembered by thousands of people across the globe for what he did for South Africa. Not even one of you in this House would spend 27 years in jail and afterwards reconcile with his oppressors after his release as he did, because they had been his worst enemies.
I thank the elders in our midst, including Chief Buthelezi and Mr Mlangeni, who understood him well. They understood what he was doing and what his goals were.
I am reminded of the political violence that was at its peak in KwaZulu- Natal when he was released from prison. He visited the province on 25 February 1990 and held a rally at one of the soccer stadiums in Durban. He instructed everyone who attended to throw their guns, their spears and other weapons into the ocean.
I also wish to thank you, Mageba, [clan name], for saying that Mr Mandela was your leader and he was supposed to be, since he was your elder. When he visited the royal house he said: No matter how bad the conflict between two people is, but when you invite each other, sit down and talk about it; you can resolve your differences.
I also thank him for speaking out against violence in Thokoza where political violence led to the murder of many people. He did that on 13 August 1993. I will not say that one person could make a difference and successfully change other people's bad behaviour.
Hon Deputy President of the country, it is in your hands to see to it that Mr Mandela's dream of reconciliation is realised. Our differences of opinion regarding the methods of attaining this dream do not mean that we should be enemies for life.
It is your responsibility to stand firm for the truth and also ensure that you do all that you think is supposed to be done. I also wish to thank the former apartheid president, Mr de Klerk. He stood right where I am standing now, in this House, and said that he was unbanning all the previously banned political parties and that all political exiles should come back home. He also praised you, Your Highness; you made a difference by giving him advice that made him make that resolution. Obtaining advice is essential for one to do what is expected of them.
To the Mandela family: The loss is not only yours but it is felt by the whole nation. I lament on behalf of my tribe: Rest in peace, Madiba, and farewell. I send my condolences to the abaThembu clan, the President and his Deputy, and all the members of the ANC which was under the leadership of Mr Mandela. Thank you, Chairperson. [Applause.]]
Hon Speaker, hon Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces, Your Excellency Deputy President Motlanthe, the family of President Mandela, hon members, hon guests and the nation in mourning, I could not find an expression apt enough to explain the passing on of former President Mandela, but there is a Sepedi saying ...
Mokgapa o mogolo o wele, dithaga di lla ma?ogo?ogo. [The father of the nation is gone, the great tree has fallen and the birds have lost their home.]
The big tree has fallen and the birds that used to nest there are left stranded. We all knew that President Mandela had been sick for some time and yet that was not enough to prepare us for the eventuality. We were a nation in denial and somehow hoped against hope that the dreaded day would never arrive.
Rolihlahla Nelson Mandela, first President of a democratic South Africa, really deserved to be referred to as the father of the nation.
Papago set?haba. Mokgapa o mogolo o wele thaga di lla ma?ogo?ogo. [The father of the nation. The great tree has fallen and the birds have lost their home.]
"Father of the nation" is a title he carried with humility and dignity, and in the process earned South Africa the respect of the global community.
President Mandela was a unifier. He tirelessly worked for the unity of the people of our land and he stretched out a hand of friendship, even to those who had persecuted him. He would have been excused if he had come out of prison an angry and bitter person. In fact, there was a lot of anxiety from some who had believed that the country would descend into chaos.
Yet he chose a very difficult path - the path of unity, love and reconciliation. It is easy to hate but it requires a brave person to love. The writer Dr John Maxwell, in his book The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, states that one of those laws is the "law of connection", and Maxwell summarises this law by saying that a leader touches the heart before asking for the hand. Or, people do not care how much you know until they know how much you care.
Madiba loved South Africa and her people. He had a caring attitude. That is why it was easy, even to those who might have differed with him, to respond positively when he reached out to them. He had touched the people's hearts and they happily and confidently responded when he asked for a hand.
As I've said, Madiba earned the respect of the whole world. But how can we as a people pay tribute to Madiba? We can do that by erecting statues in his memory. We can accelerate the building of the Nelson Mandela Children's Hospital. We can name schools and boulevards after him. Yet, the greatest monument we can build in his honour is a free and prosperous South Africa - a South Africa free from poverty and want; a truly equal society where women and children can walk the streets without fear of abuse and crime; and a South Africa free of corruption.
On behalf of Azapo, I convey condolences to the family, to the abaThembu, to the ANC and to the people of South Africa. He has fought a good fight and he has finished the race. We say "a good fight", not a perfect fight. So we say ...
Robala ka kgotso, Madiba! [Rest in peace, Madiba!]
Lala ngoxolo, Dalibhunga! [Rest in peace, Dalibhunga!]
Lala salama, baba wataifa! [Rest in peace, father of the nation.]
Mr Speaker, comrades and hon members, in my own capacity and on behalf of the APC, I wish to convey heartfelt condolences to and express solidarity with the Mandela family and the ANC on the passing away of our former President, Rolihlahla Nelson Mandela. May his soul rest in peace. He has served his country, Africa and humanity with a distinction equalled by few.
As we mourn and celebrate Nelson Mandela's legacy and passing on, let us remember that he is a product of our past - a past of oppression, of struggle, of victory. It is an understanding of this past with its pain, tribulations, loneliness, frustrations, tears and death that will help us appreciate Nelson Mandela and those of his generation who served, suffered and sacrificed for us to be here today. He stands head and shoulders above his generation. He is an expression of the best of that generation.
On his life, we celebrate freedom. On his life, we honour service - selfless service in the interests of all, in particular the poor majority.
The struggle of which Mandela was a leader - a struggle for which he was prepared to sacrifice his life - was about restoring the dignity of the African people and changing their material conditions for the better. As Amilcar Cabral said, when people fight for freedom, they are not fighting for ideas or things in anyone's head; they are fighting for material benefits and to see their lives move forward.
The sacrifices that Nelson Mandela made will be in vain if we continue to wax lyrical about him while the majority of our people continue to wallow in gut-wrenching poverty, either because those of us given the responsibility to run the affairs of state at whatever level fail our people through inefficiency, waste, corruption, theft of public resources and maladministration, or because those of us for whom conditions were created under white minority rule to acquire land, farms, factories, mines and better education, resist transformation and redistribution of the wealth of this country.
President Mandela left us on 5 December 2013. Yes, 5 December. It is a date that has been reinforced in our consciousness, for it is the birth date of another patriot, an outstanding leader of our struggle, Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe. Sobukwe was born on 5 December 1924 in the little Karoo town of Graaff-Reinet.
Long live Madiba! Long live! [Applause.]
Hon Speaker and Chairperson, let us first thank God for giving us this great leader. Yes, we must be thankful that God lent us this great leader for 95 years - Comrade President Nelson Mandela.
I can say without any doubt that, were it not for Nelson Mandela, this country could have gone up in flames. It is because of Nelson Mandela's wisdom that we sit here in Parliament as fellow South African, black and white. Nelson Mandela saved this country from a blood bath. Yes, who can forget when one of our outstanding great leaders, Comrade Chris Hani, was brutally killed by evil forces? It was Nelson Mandela who said to us, the solution to the problems of our country won't come through the barrel of a gun, but through talking to each other. Yes, Nelson Mandela calmed all of us. Some of us were very hot-headed and wanted to fight and avenge the killing of Comrade Chris Hani. We were very angry. Were it not for Nelson Mandela, thousands could have been killed, black and white. Yet, here we sit together as one nation because of him.
Fellow South Africans, what is it that we can do to preserve his legacy? I believe Comrade Mandela left us with a precious treasure that nobody can take away from us, and that is our Constitution. That is what Nelson Mandela lived for and struggled for. Let me remind you: this Constitution was signed by this great hero, Nelson Mandela. If we respect this Constitution like he did, we will always live in peace and harmony in this country.
Yes, when thousands of us were locked up in the prisons of this country, our hope was pinned on our leaders on the island, led by Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. Yet we knew that he was also behind bars and serving a life sentence, but we were always singing a song, Rolihlahla Mandela, freedom is in your hands. Show us the way to freedom, in our land South Africa.
I want to ask permission to sing one verse. [Interjections.]
Rolihlahla Mandela, freedom is in your hands. Show us the way to freedom, in our land South Africa.
On behalf of Cope and the Bloem family, we say to Madiba:
Robala ka kgotso, Ntate. [Rest in peace, Father.]
Mooiloop, groot leier! [Go well, great leader!]
Till we meet again, grandfather. We salute you, our commander-in-chief.
Speaker, Chairperson of the NCOP, hon members...
... Motlatsa Mopresidente, lelapa la Mandela le metswalle, ke re madume, matshediso ho leloko la Mandela. [... Deputy President, the Mandela family and friends, I greet you, and I send condolences to the Mandela family.]
This special Joint Sitting of Parliament is a fitting tribute to Madiba as we bid farewell to him.
He comes from a different generation, a generation well-drilled in selflessness and high moral values, a generation which produced Lembede, Mda, Sobukwe, Makwetu, and many others. Comrade Mandela has submitted to the will of God in that, after serving one's purpose, one must proceed to His Kingdom. His body will join the earth, the land that he and his predecessors committed to fight for. He served his purpose well. He is now enjoying a well-deserved rest.
It is indeed highly significant that he died on 5 December, the day that Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe - another icon and a great leader in South Africa, in Africa and in the world - was born.
Our thoughts are with Nelson Mandela's wife, Ms Graa Machel, his former wife, Ms Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, his children, his grandchildren and the entire Madiba clan. Our thoughts are with his comrades who are here today, and those who have passed on, who fought alongside him to achieve our political democracy. Our thoughts are with the masses, the people of this country, and with the people throughout the world who embraced him as their own.
In Tata, the country has lost one of its greatest sons. He departs this world with a lot of work still to be done. He left us at a critical time with many challenges. The unemployment rate is still high. Poverty is still the same for African people. African people are still landless. The moral values of this society have declined. The rate of abuse of children and women is very high. Self-enrichment and greed have reached unacceptable levels. These are trying times indeed.
Let us use this time to reflect on the task at hand. We cannot delay the redistribution of land to the African people any more. There cannot be any excuses. We urgently need to include the values we want to project. Stealing from the public purse has to be classified as treason and should be punishable by a life sentence.
Ntate Mandela was in prison as a political prisoner. It is unfortunate that we still have 18 members of the African People's Liberation Army in jail as political prisoners. We call upon our Presidency to release those comrades in honour of Ntate Mandela.
Comrade Mandela was a great boxer and today we are also mourning the death of a great boxer, Baby Jake Matlala. May his soul rest in peace. And may Almighty God accept the souls of the many people who will be laid to rest this coming weekend.
Ka sehaeso ha morena a hlokahetse o allwa phate. [In my culture, when the king dies, he has to be accompanied by someone.]
Many people passed on as from Thursday. This shows that Ntate Mandela is a king. When a king dies, he does not die alone.
Ka mantswe ao, ke re robala ka kgotso, Madiba. Ke a leboha. [Mahofi.] [With these words I would like to say, rest in peace, Madiba. I thank you. [Applause.]]
Mr Speaker, hon Deputy President, hon members, fellow South Africans, President Nelson Mandela, uTata Madiba, the father of our young nation has passed on.
Last week Friday, when South Africa awoke to the news of his departure, we felt the world stand still in solidarity with us. Yet no one is feeling the loss as deeply as South Africans are. It is a loss with which we are grappling as we would the death of a beloved parent.
We all know that the last year was very difficult for President Mandela. For all 84 days in winter, during which he was hospitalised this year, we held our breath and wondered how we would continue without him. We prayed, we meditated, we stood vigil outside his home and his hospital ward, and we laid flowers to honour the great man who led the founding of a great nation.
I cannot help but think that this was Madiba's way of giving us time, letting us know in advance, in his generous way, that we must begin to prepare ourselves for his departure.
Because of his generosity, we are able both to grieve his loss and celebrate his life, his leadership, and the tireless work he did to build our nation. In the early hours of Friday morning, images of South Africans dancing and singing in celebration were beamed around the world. The sound of vuvuzelas pierced the early morning air from Mamelodi to Houghton, and all the way to South Africa House in London.
Today we are grateful that he is no longer suffering or in pain. UTata has gone home. He is finally at peace.
Useyidlozi lethu elihle. [He is now our good ancestral spirit.]
President Mandela may have died, but his legacy lives on in each and every one of us. He has transcended his own body of bones and flesh. Today his name is a symbol of all we hope for in South Africa.
Unlike the vast majority of the hon members in this House today, I never had the privilege of meeting President Mandela. I was still a teenager when - flanked by the hon Albertina Sisulu, hon Thabo Mbeki, hon Trevor Manuel, and hon Kader Asmal - he was sworn in as a Member of Parliament, and then elected by this House as the first President of a democratic South Africa.
But I do have one small memory of Madiba which I may call my own.
On Sunday, 25 February 1990 - when I was nine years old - my family travelled from Umlazi to Virginia Airport in Durban North to see Madiba's plane landing ahead of his King's Park address to the people of KwaZulu- Natal. That was the morning he would deliver this famous injunction to the people of a province torn apart by political strife:
My message to those of you involved in this battle of brother against brother is this: take your guns, your knives, and your pangas, and throw them into the sea!
I remember watching Nelson Mandela disembark from a small aircraft, stooping as he exited the plane, and walk towards the airport building. Only a handful of journalists were there to meet him and there were virtually no other members of the public. Although I was very young, I knew that I was standing in the middle of a page in history, watching it being written before my very eyes.
As he walked over from the tarmac, Nelson Mandela looked straight at our small family and raised his fist in the air. And then an extraordinary thing happened: I watched my father respond by raising his own fist in the air. That small act was the first time I saw my own father express himself politically and in public. Because of the violent political strife in my home province, he was never able to live to see the dawn of our democracy, or cast his vote in a free election, and because of that, that moment remains indelibly etched in my memory, and on my heart.
I am from a generation which bore witness to South Africa's transition from oppression to freedom, but was not old enough to participate in it. We knew President Mandela from the countless images of him on television and in the media; from his speeches which we listened to on the radio; from archived footage which told the story of a fearless intellectual, leader and visionary. For us, Madiba is truly an icon - a powerful symbol of all that is best about South Africa. Most importantly, we are the grateful beneficiaries of all that President Mandela stood for.
The challenge for young South Africans now is to work to protect and build on Mandela's vision for a nonracial society. His compassion for the poor and the weak is now our responsibility. His devotion to the children of our country is now our exemplar. As the foremost beneficiaries of his life's work, we have a duty to take President Mandela's vision and make it a reality across South Africa.
The American poet Maya Angelou has written a tribute to Madiba and to South Africa which best encapsulates the weight of responsibility which now rests upon our shoulders. She says:
Yes, Mandela's day is done. Yet we, his inheritors, will open the gates wider for reconciliation. And we will respond generously to the cries of Blacks and Whites, Asians, Hispanics, the poor who live piteously On the floor of our planet. He has offered us understanding; we will not withhold forgiveness, even from those who do not ask Nelson Mandela's day is done.
In the coming weeks, much will be said about which Mandela we must remember. Who is the Mandela we must love? Which Mandela should we cherish?
Is it Mandela the fierce intellectual, entrepreneur and partner in South Africa's first black law firm? Is it the Gandhian Mandela, who advocated the pacifist action of boycotts and strikes against the apartheid regime?
Is it Madiba the prince, Mandela the athlete, or Mandela the young lion, who took his party in a radical direction when he cofounded uMkhonto weSizwe?
Or is it President Mandela the statesman, who commanded the world stage with an unquestioned sense of morality, and a keen understanding of the power of symbols and how they can draw together a divided people?
I draw inspiration from the Mandela who stirred up his organisation from within; who, when he was my age, became leader of the ANC Youth League and took his place on the ANC national executive; the Mandela who pressed his colleagues for more drastic action and challenged the status quo. That is my Mandela, my inspiration. [Applause.]
I say to my fellow South Africans, look to your Mandela at this difficult time. Cherish the memory of the Mandela you hold dear, who spoke to your heart and your mind. Never let him go.
In the coming weeks South Africans across our country will mourn, commemorate and celebrate Mandela. We may have lost the father of our nation, but we must hold in our hearts the Mandela family, which has lost a father, a grandfather and a great-grandfather.
To Mrs Graa Machel and to the hon Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, I extend the deepest sympathies of the DA. To the Mandela children and grandchildren, thank you for your generosity; thank for sharing your father with our nation and with the world. South Africa has lost a founding father, but you have lost so much more than that. We cannot imagine your pain and your loss. Our hearts are with you. We have lost the father of our nation at the tender age of 19 years old. Like every child who loses a parent at a young age, this means that we must grow up faster than we expected. We must take up the responsibilities with which we have been left. We must take courage and show leadership. We must take up the cause of our most vulnerable fellow citizens, and realise the vision that Madiba had for us.
Lala ngoxolo, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. Emndenini wakho, sithi: akwehlanga lungehli. Lalani ngenxeba, nina bakwaMandela. [May your soul rest in peace, Tata Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. To the Mandela family, we convey our condolences, and comfort is upon you.]
Long live Nelson Mandela, long live. Thank you. [Applause.]
Mr Speaker, Chairperson of the NCOP, Deputy President, hon members, the Mandela and Sisulu families, I beg the indulgence of all South Africans and the world to break with convention because today is a tribute to no ordinary man. I do so not because of my disrespect, but because I have been asked to pay tribute to one of the greatest sons to ever grace the length and breadth of our beautiful country, continent and indeed, the world. All the contributors to this special sitting have spoken with unanimity because the man we are paying tribute to was well-loved and respected across the aisles of this august House.
Allow me to start where I should end. Aah, Dalibhunga! Madiba! Sophitsho! Yem-Yem! Allow me to speak directly to our icon as if he were present among us. I am doing so because of a life well-lived and the dedication Madiba put to the cause in the service of his people. I am addressing him directly because although he has passed on, his spirit moves in this House.
Tata Madiba, when the sad news of your passing on was received on the 5th of December, many thought the sun would not rise the following day. It did rise, but there was a strong absence of the ray. The nation should indeed be in mourning, but the need to celebrate your life surpasses all our tears. We need to reflect deeply and safeguard all those institutions which you bestowed upon us. One of these institutions is the Constitution, which we are all obliged to safeguard. As parliamentarians, there is no better way to thank you than to ensure that the Constitution you assisted to craft will always reign supreme.
In 1934, at the age of 16, when you returned from the initiation school at Mvezo, the elders gave you the name Dalibhunga. To be given such a unique name at that age was an indication that you were born to lead. Whether you knew that one day 490 lawmakers would be gathered in solemn respect to wish you well on your next journey, is forethought, even though we cannot answer. For many of us, it was neither envisaged nor forethought, even though we knew that it was inevitable. I remember with fond memories when you visited my constituency on 27 April 1994. You had come to report back to the first president of the ANC, Rev Langalibalele Dube, that at last the people of South Africa had attained universal suffrage. As a symbol of respect, you cast your vote at Ohlange High School in Inanda, a school established by Rev Dube. I had the honour to accompany you when you cast your first vote as a free South African.
Today I am speaking of you as a man who could have chosen to lead a life of comfort and wealth, of glory and fame, but chose to lead his people. I am speaking of you who could have chosen to challenge the laws of the country in high courts and win, but chose to lead a life in prison - all because of the love you had for your people.
With your friends Walter Sisulu and Oliver Tambo you forged one of the best fighting triumvirates against the system of apartheid. The three of you became the architects of our democratic order.
Some of us who were called to serve in your Cabinet, approached the responsibilities with fear and trepidation. You comforted us all by stating that we were equal to the task because you, too, had never been President before. We took our cue from you and did the best we could in spite of our inexperience. It was an honour to serve in the first Cabinet at your pleasure, Mr President.
You taught us the true meaning of forgiveness. You helped us to reclaim our dignity as a people, and emboldened us to stand with our shoulders high and our chins up. Your power to forge unity through sports across all codes reduced all anxieties and fear for the future. Captured in Invictus, your power to use rugby to heal the nation will be remembered for posterity, to assist our children to forge an even tighter unity.
Bidding you farewell as a gallant soldier, commander-in-chief and leader of our revolution, is to send you to meet those leaders of the ANC who went before you, such as Dube, Lembede, Tambo, Luthuli, Joe Slovo, Mabhida, Chris Hani and many others. You have joined the leadership corps that never bent when they were persecuted - a leadership that faced grinding indignity and humiliation under the system of apartheid, and came out on the other side with their heads held high. It was a leadership that never bent with the wind. You are also joining your favourite IsiXhosa poet, S E K Mqhayi, whom you referred to as our Shakespeare, our laureate, and a comet: "Streaking through the night sky".
I remember vividly that at your welcome-home rally in Durban you called on South Africans to throw their weapons into the ocean, a decision which was not popular in KwaZulu-Natal. It was only later that we realised the wisdom of your call, for continuing with internecine violence would have led to a mutually assured destruction, making the attainment of peace even more difficult. You have taught us the true values of humility. Your leadership has been one that was underpinned by honesty. You were courageous and led our country with integrity. You were compassionate and generous. You warned against the devastation of war and preached peace in some of the intractable conflict zones such as Burundi. You brought us back into the family of nations. Having been isolated because of the policies of our past, the presence of world leaders tomorrow and on Sunday will bear testament to the manner in which you have helped us find our place in the community of nations. Indeed, when you stated on 10 May 1994 that:
Never, never and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another and suffer the indignity of being the skunk of the world.
... you were ushering us into a position on an equal footing with the nations of the world.
Therefore, when I pay tribute to you today, I am moved by the spirit of respect that has been accorded to you from the different time zones. It is zones that are earlier times than ours - such as time zones of our friends and comrades in New Zealand and in the Eastern Pacific. I am talking about those in different climates who live in the sunny parts of Europe and the colder climates of the Antarctic. I am speaking about the many tributes that have poured in from the Americans and from our African brothers and sisters. Your life touched all of them and restored faith in the triumph of the human spirit.
I am talking about the kaleidoscope of the colours of the people of the world who inhabit the Antipodes, the Transatlantic, the Equator and the Amazon forests. I am talking about people of different political and ideological persuasions and religious convictions. All of them looked up to you as their own icon.
You could have chosen the relative comfort of the life of royalty, but you chose an uncomfortable path of taking up the cause of your people's freedom. You were ready to die for that cause, and had to suffer the indignity of 27 years of incarceration. However, you taught us much more than just sacrifice. You taught us the true meaning and the power of forgiveness. More than any other leader, you stand majestically as the rightful claimant to the title of "father of the nation".
I am paying tribute to you as a recipient of the Noble Peace Prize. I am paying tribute to you as a man who braced the cold weather of the Atlantic on Robben Island and the glaring light of the sun that nearly made you blind. I am paying tribute to you as the man who stood to defy the power of the apartheid state and told them that you would stay your course for the benefit of your people.
From the loins of Gadla Henry Mphakanyiswa and the girdle of the Nosekeni of the Nkedama of the amaMpevu clan, you were born to lead the nation and the world. You washed in the waters of Mbashe River in Mvezo, which you described as "a place apart, a tiny precinct removed from the world of great events, where life was lived much as it had been for hundreds of years".
In your veins coursed the royal blood of Mqhekezweni, where you defied your noble station in life to be a ploughboy, a wagon guide, a shepherd who rode horses, shot birds and jostled with other boys in stick fighting. I speak of you as a man who chose to be ordinary. At this palace, you lived a life of simplicity, when you could have taken advantage of the royal life of golden spoons and gilded existence.
From this experience you learnt that in the presence of opulence, the lives of the less endowed were more important than your own. Although you walked tall among kings, queens, presidents and prime ministers, you never forgot the ordinary men and women. You ran your race with distinction and now you have to take a well-earned and well-deserved rest.
We shall always remember you for your favourite theme song - "Lizalis'idinga lakho" [Fulfil Thy Promise Oh God of Truth], which you sang with much zest and vigour. As the sweet melodies of the song reverberate, we join you with the composer, Tiyo Soga, in wishing you a smooth passage on your next journey. Today we call on the voices of Sisulu, Tambo and Luthuli to join you in the melodic lyrics that filled the Waaihoek Methodist Church at our movement's inaugural meeting on 8 January 1912.
It is in another song that you have impacted on the lives of others by the example that you set: When Whitney Houston sang in her velvety voice the R Kelly-written song, "I Look To You", she must have been referring to the example that you set for all:
As I lay me down; Heaven hear me now; I'm almost lost without a cause; After giving it my all, After my strength has gone; And when melodies are gone In you I can be strong; I look to you.
I stand today to proclaim to the world that although you were ours in the ANC, there are many who have claimed you as their own hero too. You were a man for all seasons, a leader to all of us, and the glue that bound us together. We live in the comfort that you and many of our leaders never wavered in your resolve to categorise our struggle as a just one. We never wavered, under your able leadership, to tell the world that as we struggled for our liberation, we were also struggling for the oppressed people of the world.
Now that you are in your eternal sleep, and now that you have breathed your last breath, the world looks back at you with fond memories of a man who captured their imagination. There are those who have nimbler feet, whose memory of your famous Madiba shuffle shall forever consume their imaginations. There are those of the lettered kind, whose abiding memories shall be your sharp pen and excellent wit. There are many who are more inclined to the world of fashion, who will remember your multicoloured shirts.
Then there are children who will always remember the love you had for them. Many of us as lawyers remember vividly how you showed how injustice permeated our courts. When you stood in that inquisitorial court to proclaim that you stood accused in a white man's court, you made us realise that the issue of justice was paramount and until there were equal rights for all, there would be no justice.
You were a colossus who led the ANC and our country during one of its most trying and difficult times of transformation. Some have used similar terms such as "titan" and "giant who carried a universal message". You contributed immensely to the growth and consolidation of the ANC and our government.
You will go down in history as one of the shapers of our democratic state. Even by your own admission, you claimed to have been no bigger than other members of the ANC, stating eloquently that you were a member of a collective. But I say you were first amongst equals.
On such occasions of grief, we have to accept that such big men like you survive because of the support of even stronger women. There can be no mention of Tata Mandela's achievements without mentioning the sterling roles that were played your wife, Graa, and your former wife, Winnie.
To these strong women and the entire Mandela family: We appreciate how they ensured that the Madiba to whom we are bidding farewell today had comfort and support, and that throughout his life, he had a shoulder to lean on. [Applause.] Your long walk to freedom has not ended. It is just the passing of an era. We pick up your spear to continue your long walk towards the economic emancipation of all, so that our economy can reflect the demographics of the new South African rainbow nation. [Applause.]
As I close, let me go back to the beginning. Dalibhunga! Sophitsho! Madiba! Dlomo! Yem-Yemu! Ngqolomsila! Velabambhentsele! The big tree has fallen. The baobab has fallen. The world will never be the same again. A pledge we make to you, Mr President, is that as a nation, we will keep on walking. I thank you. [Applause.]
Order! Hon members, the presiding officers of Parliament associate themselves with the sentiments expressed by the members. We also wish to express our appreciation for the messages of condolence that we have been receiving from parliaments all over the world.
A special bound copy of members' contributions today will be sent to the family to convey sentiments expressed by Parliament.
Books of condolences are available in the following areas: Africa House, the upper foyer and the entrance to the National Assembly, and the Queen's Hall in the National Council of Provinces. Ushers are available at the exits to assist guests.
Members and guests should please remain at their places until the procession has left the Chamber.
Can we please rise and observe a moment of silence.
Moment of silence observed, all members standing.
The Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces adjourned the Joint Sitting at 16:31.