12 December 2013
Women of all religious groups have been invited to reflect, pray and celebrate the life of Nelson Mandela at the Orlando Stadium in Soweto outside Johannesburg on Thursday.
Hosted by the Gauteng provincial government, the event aims to recognise “the ways in which Tata Madiba promoted women’s development and emancipation”, Collins Chabane, Minister in the Presidency for Performance Monitoring and Evaluation, said at a media briefing on Wednesday.
The interfaith women’s day of prayer forms part of the 10-day national mourning period for the former president, who died last Thursday at his home in Houghton, Johannesburg.
Mandela was passionate about women’s equality, Thebe Mohatle writes on the Gauteng Province’s website. “Cognisant that women bore the greatest brunt of the apartheid system, former president Nelson Mandela has throughout his life strived to promote women’s development and emancipation”.
The programme includes representatives from different religious groups, including Christians, Muslims, Bahai, Jewish, Hindu and African Independent Churches, Chabane said.
The government has invited South Africans to form a guard of honour along the memorial route between 1 Military Hospital and the Union Buildings, where Mandela will lie in state until Friday.