Mandela gets standing ovation

2010-07-11 19:46

Johannesburg - Former president Nelson Mandela and his wife Graca Machel put in a brief appearance at Soccer City stadium for the closing ceremony of the 2010 FIFA World Cup on Sunday night.

Mandela, warmly dressed in a black overcoat, gloves and fur hat, waved and smiled as he was greeted with a standing ovation from the 95 000-strong crowd.

The frail anti-apartheid icon who turns 92 this week and was wheeled into the stadium in a golf cart, left after a few minutes to watch the final from home.

His grandson Mandla Mandela on Sunday said FIFA president Sepp Blatter had put too much pressure on the former president to attend the final.

He said Blatter had been "inconsiderate" given that the family was still grieving the death of Mandela's great-granddaughter Zenani in a car accident on the eve of the tournament.

"My grandfather has recently lost a great-granddaughter and the family is in mourning," Mandela said. "They should be appraised of our customs and traditions."

Mandela cancelled his scheduled appearance at the opening after learning of Zenani's death.

More In This Category

Diego Maradona has sent a message of love and admiration to former president Fidel Castro and promised to visit Cuba soon.
Gideon Sam, president of South Africa's Olympic governing body SASCOC, has urged South Africans to look further down the road.
A German aquarium says there is no way it will sell or lend octopus oracle Paul to Spain, after repeated requests from the country.
Nine out of 10 foreign visitors in SA for the World Cup will recommend the country as an ideal holiday destination, a survey has found.
Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk