BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, April 4, 2018 (Press Unit in the Office of the Prime Minister) – Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, has extended heartfelt condolences to the Mandela family on the passing of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, South African anti-apartheid campaigner and former wife of the late South African President Nelson Mandela.
Ms. Madikizela-Mandela died on Monday, April 2 at age 81 after a prolonged illness for which she had been in and out of hospital since the start of the year, her family spokesman said.
Prime Minister Harris said, “The Government and people of St. Kitts and Nevis join the rest of the world, and South Africa in particular, in recognizing, honouring and celebrating her outstanding contributions to the fight against apartheid and for her support to Mr. Nelson Mandela during his prolonged imprisonment and his eventual triumph.”
“As a firm advocate for the dispossessed and the marginalized and for her struggle for equality and justice, the name Winnie Mandela will be forever etched in the history of South Africa,” the prime minister added.
It was Ms. Madikizela-Mandela who took the baton after her husband, Nelson Mandela, served a 27-year prison sentence, becoming an international symbol of resistance to apartheid. She too was jailed for her role in the fight for justice and equality.
For her passion and dedication to her cause, Winnie Mandela became known affectionately to her supporters as “Mother of the Nation”.
In April 2016, the government of President Jacob Zuma bestowed Ms. Madikizela-Mandela with one of the country’s highest honors–the Order of Luthuli, for her contributions to the struggle for democracy.
Ms. Madikizela-Mandela was a member of South Africa’s parliament at the time of her death.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that a memorial service for the late Winnie Mandela will be held on Wednesday, April 11, and an official national funeral will be held on Saturday, April 14.