World leaders to gather for Mandela funeral

World leaders to gather for Mandela funeral

South Africa is preparing for the arrival of a flood of world leaders for the funeral and memorial services for former president Nelson Mandela.

Among those who have already indicated that they will be travelling to South Africa to honour the anti-apartheid hero, who died at his Johannesburg home at the age of 95 on Thursday night, are US President Barack Obama and his two predecessors, George W Bush and Bill Clinton.

Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff will also be among the guests.

A week of mourning, with several events planned, has been declared by the government.

Mr Mandela will be buried in his rural hometown in the Eastern Cape on Sunday December 15.

Tomorrow has been declared a national day of prayer and reflection, while a national memorial service is scheduled to be held at a Johannesburg stadium where Mr Mandela made his last public appearance for the closing ceremony of the 2010 football World Cup.

Official memorial services will also be held in all of South Africa’s provinces and regions over the next week.

Mr Mandela’s body will lie in state from Wednesday until Friday at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, the capital.

The state airline, South African Airways, has laid on special charter flights to ferry invited dignitaries to the funeral.

The government has announced that a special sitting of the two houses of parliament – the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces – will be held on Monday to pay tribute to Mr Mandela, the country’s first black and democratically-elected president.

More on this topic

Picture Perfect: ‘I was shaking like a leaf with a mixture of nervousness, excitement’Picture Perfect: ‘I was shaking like a leaf with a mixture of nervousness, excitement’

Nelson Mandela statue unveiled at UNNelson Mandela statue unveiled at UN

'Walk to Freedom' taking place in Dublin to mark Mandela Day'Walk to Freedom' taking place in Dublin to mark Mandela Day

Obama joins South Africans to mark Mandela centennialObama joins South Africans to mark Mandela centennial

More in this Section

Cheltenham Festival organisers defend event after racegoers report symptomsCheltenham Festival organisers defend event after racegoers report symptoms

Rapper Playboi Carti facing drug chargesRapper Playboi Carti facing drug charges

Elton John pledges million dollars to ensure HIV/Aids not ‘forgotten’Elton John pledges million dollars to ensure HIV/Aids not ‘forgotten’

Loss of taste and smell will not be added to Covid-19 symptoms watchlist, says UK govtLoss of taste and smell will not be added to Covid-19 symptoms watchlist, says UK govt


Lifestyle

Sorting out Posh Cork for ages!Ask Audrey: 'I'll end up looking like a woman from Kanturk'

Cork architect Loïc Dehaye tells Eve Kelliher how he created his dream home from a blank canvas.'It was like this house was waiting for us': Cork architect talks creating his dream home

Keeping to a routine can be difficult for people in quarantine.Life on the inside: 10 ways to start your day right in lockdown

Who needs a gym when you can look in your kitchen cupboards for equipment instead?Don’t have weights for working out? These household objects will do the trick

More From The Irish Examiner