Emotions run high in the live broadcast during the concluding funeral services of Winnie Madizikela-Mandela.
While thousands mourn the passing of a historical icon, two parties exhibit division during the ceremony. Members of the African National Congress (ANC) and the newer party, Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) sparred in words on the direction of South Africa in various speeches.
Despite political differences evident in the final burial of South African anti-Apartheid hero, Madizikela-Mandela, black South Africans are sure that “the land will return to the people.”
Between tributes, speakers representing the ANC and the lone speaker invited representing EFF, Julius Malema, work out years-long disputes over power and the direction of South Africa. The ANC, the historical party that took a strong leadership role after the dismantling of Apartheid role has been challenged within the last decade by leaders who felt that the white minority had too much economic power in a post-Apartheid South Africa.
To date, whites own majority of the natural resources including fertile farm land. Recently, a bill passed to return land back to native black populations in which it was stolen over years of British and Dutch colonial authority and wars with Zulu, Xhosa and Khoisan nations.
During the ceremony, Malema said in fiery speech, “Mama you did not know your organization has been rendered incapable in loving you back,” and “Those who sold you out to the Apartheid regime are here.”
A Divided Legacy
The differences between the parties represent the dichotomous life of Madizikela-Mandela who was praised for decades for her work as a freedom fighter then castigated after Nelson Mandela was freed and South Africa’s reconciliation trials uncovered that she called for torture and death of South Africans in actions of political violence.
During the ceremony, the president of ANC’s Woman’s League, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, challenged both parties and South Africa, calling for a woman president after she said, “We must confess that we have allowed patriarchy to oppress you. Mama Winnie, we have allowed the media and Apartheid, Imperialism to define who you are. South Africa was the pride of Mama Winnie. And she as a lioness knew her duties of leading a pride from protecting South Africans, staying with the poor and fighting for the week and the vulnerable, as well as the youth and the women.”
Dignitaries from all over the world attended the funeral including presidents throughout Africa, including notables from the US. Civil Rights activist Jesse Jackson and supermodel, Naomi Campbell.