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Madikizela-Mandela’s legacy will continue to serve as a beacon of strength for the nation: Graca Machel

03 April 2018 - 20:17 By Timeslive
Graca Macel and Winnie Madikizela Mandela embrace each other.
Graca Macel and Winnie Madikizela Mandela embrace each other.
Image: REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko/File Photo

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela’s legacy will serve as a beacon from which the nation can continue to draw guidance and strength during difficult times‚ former first lady Graca Machel said on Tuesday evening.

Referring to Madikizela-Mandela as “my big sister”‚ Machel said the late struggle icon – who died on Monday at the age of 81 – would “continue to serve as a guide to your loving family‚ your grateful nation‚ our beloved Africa‚ and indeed‚ the world”.

“The extraordinary life you led is an example of resilient fortitude and inextinguishable passion that is a source of inspiration to us all of how to courageously confront challenges with unwavering strength and determination. Thank you for your brilliant wisdom‚ your fierce defiance‚ and your stylish beauty.

“Fortunately‚ stars shine brightest during the darkest of hours. I know you will continue to illuminate our sky‚ even through the storms and clouds. Your legacy will be an uplifting beacon from which we can continue to draw guidance and strength during difficult times‚” Machel‚ the widow of former president Nelson Mandela‚ said in a statement.

She said Madikizela-Mandela loved her people unconditionally and sacrificed so much for their freedom.

“It is my prayer that as befitting tributes are paid to you both at home and abroad‚ all of us will internalise the values you helped to mould and birth into existence. As a nation‚ I hope we will stand tall and proud‚ and as uncompromising as you were in the defence and protection of our rights.

“As one of our brightest stars‚ continue to be the lioness that protects your children and your grandchildren. Warm their hearts so that while your transition may shake them‚ it does not break their spirit.

“Your legacy is everlasting. Take a well-deserved rest in peace‚ my BIG sister.”


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