WATCH: South Africa pays final respects to Winnie Madikizela-Mandela



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SOWETO - Anti-apartheid icon Winnie Madikizela-Mandela was laid to rest on Saturday.

Her official funeral service was held at Orlando Stadium in Soweto.

Flags flew at half-mast as South Africans bid her a final farewell.

A black hearse carrying the body of Madikizela-Mandela, one of the most divisive figures in the anti-apartheid struggle, slowly drove from her house to Orlando Stadium on Saturday morning.

Madikizela-Mandela, who died in Johannesburg aged 81 on 2 April after a long illness, was celebrated for keeping her husband Nelson Mandela's dream of a non-racial South Africa alive during his 27-year imprisonment.

"There were times when people could not afford a funeral and she would assist," said neighbour Gloria Searole.

READ: Winnie Madikizela-Mandela's body arrives at her Soweto home

"She was very generous. It is a pity that all these things were not known. She was an exceptional woman, she was fearless."

President Cyril Ramaphosal led the mourners at a pre-burial service.

American civil rights activist Jesse Jackson attended, as are the presidents of Namibia and the Republic of Congo.

"She is truly the mother of South Africa," Jackson told journalists on Friday.

AFP

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