Zuma Conveys Condolences To Former President Mandela

By Novell Zwangendaba

PRETORIA - President Jacob Zuma today Friday 11 June 2010, on behalf
of the government and people of South Africa, offered his deepest
condolences to former President Nelson Mandela and the entire Mandela
family, following the death of his great grand-daughter Zenani in an
accident in the early hours of this morning.

President Zuma said, "We extend our condolences to the Mandela family
following the loss of dear Zenani in the car accident."

"The nation shares your loss and mourns with you, especially on the
day on which our dreams and hopes come alive in the opening of the
first FIFA World Cup on African soil," concluded President Zuma.

Former President Nelson Mandela will now not attend the Opening
Ceremony of the 2010 FIFA World Cup this afternoon.

The SABC quoted a Nelson Mandela Foundation spokesperson as saying
Mandela had learnt of the tragic death of his 13-year-old
great-granddaughter and that it would be "inappropriate for him to
attend the ceremony" as he was in mourning.

The Nelson Mandela Foundation said on Friday morning that the
grand-daughter of the former President's daughter Zinzi Mandela,
Zenani, 13, had died in a car crash.

"Zenani Mandela was travelling in a car returning from the World Cup
Kick-Off Concert at Orlando Stadium when the accident occurred. There
was only one car involved and no one else was injured," said
communication head at the foundation Sello Hatang.

Zenani, who celebrated her 13th birthday on Wednesday, was one of the
former President's nine great-grandchildren.

Madiba was due to make a brief appearance at the celebrations before
going home to watch the opening match between South Africa and Mexico.

Reports say the driver of the car has been arrested on charges of
culpable homicide and drunken driving.