Today 13 December
Crushing disappointment tainted the final day of Nelson Mandela's lying in state Friday, with tens of thousands of mourners unable to say their personal farewell to the anti-apartheid icon. Friday was the last opportunity to view the body of South Africa's first black president in Pretoria, before it is transported to his boyhood village of Qunu for burial on Sunday.
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — The South African government said Friday it is aware of reports that the bogus sign language interpreter at Nelson Mandela's memorial once faced a murder charge, and said he is being investigated.
By MacDonald Dzirutwe CHINHOYI, Zimbabwe (Reuters) - Zimbabwe's 89-year-old President Robert Mugabe said on Friday members of his party would choose his eventual replacement, but gave no timeline despite a mounting succession battle triggered by long-denied reports he is suffering from cancer. Addressing a ZANU-PF central committee meeting before the party's annual conference, Africa's oldest leader denounced the increased jockeying between party factions to succeed him. But there are fears ZANU-PF could implode in a violent struggle if his office becomes vacant before the succession question is resolved. NOSE IN FRONT Analysts say Mugabe's deputy president Joice Mujuru secured an edge in the race for his post after her supporters won most of the provincial elections in the last few months.
QUNU, South Africa (AP) — The rural home where Nelson Mandela grew up in the 1920s had mud walls, a grass thatched roof, and a floor polished smooth with cow dung. When throngs flood Mandela's hometown on Sunday for his burial, they will visit a simple place steeped in old ways but which now has become the center of a massive state operation to honor the anti-apartheid leader.
PRETORIA, South Africa (AP) — It was easy to see the thousands of people who had been turned away Friday in their bid to say farewell to Nelson Mandela — they were the ones fighting back tears of disappointment.