South Africa to mark Mandela’s first death anniversary

A large number of activities are lined up for the national event, which aims to bring back to public memory a world-revered icon

Baku. 5 December. REPORT.AZ/ South Africans are expected to commemorate the first death anniversary of the former late President Nelson Mandela on Friday.

A large number of activities are lined up for the national event, which aims to bring back to public memory a world-revered icon.

South Africa's acting president Cyril Ramaphosa is due to deliver a speech at the official commemoration ceremony of the late Mandela at Freedom Park in Pretoria.

Mandela, who died on December 5 of last year, is venerated by South Africans as the father of their nation informs Report citing Anadolu Agency.

He spent 27 years in jail for taking up arms against South Africa's apartheid regime.

Mandela was released in 1990 to become South Africa's first post-apartheid president in 1994. He spent five years in office.

"South Africans are urged to wear their favorite Mandela T-shirts, shirts or other memorabilia on December 5 in his remembrance," the government said in a statement.

The acting president, meanwhile, said that South Africa drew strength, comfort and love from Mandela's memory.

He added that the late icon had given support and unity to his countrymen, the African continent and the world at large.

"We are stronger and more united by the legacy he left us," Ramaphosa said.

He called on South Africans to ring their bells, sirens and hoots and use loudhailers, among others items, to call the country to attention for three minutes in memory of the former president.

A wreath-laying ceremony is scheduled at Mandela's Statue at the lawn of the Union Buildings, the official seat of the South African government in Pretoria, on Friday as part of the national commemoration service.

Provincial governments throughout the country are also expected to hold commemorative services to mark the first year since the passing of Nelson Mandela.

"It's still too early to live with the reality that Madiba [Mandela] is gone," Mandela's widow, Graca Machel, said last month at the launched of the Nelson Mandela Remembrance Walk in commemoration of the late anti-apartheid icon and former president.

Machel told guests at the launch in November that her heart grew heavier as it approached December – the month in which her late husband died.

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