Written by Staff Writer
15 Dec, 2013 | 5:18 pm
Nelson Mandela’s body has been laid to rest in a family plot, after political and religious leaders paid tribute to South Africa’s first black president at a state funeral service.
Some 4,500 people – including foreign dignitaries – attended the service at Mandela’s ancestral home of Qunu.
A close friend, Ahmed Kathrada, told mourners he had lost an “elder brother” who was with him for many years in prison on Robben Island. Nelson Mandela died on 5 December aged 95.
His casket was carried by the military, accompanied by family and friends, from a specially-erected marquee up a hill to the graveside.
The family had asked for only a few hundred guests to be present for the traditional Xhosa burial, unlike the much larger-scale, televised service.
South Africa’s air force staged a fly-past of the gravesite as the coffin was lowered into the grave.
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