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News : Mandela to attend WC opening ceremony?

After all, Madiba will be among the dignitaries at the opening and closing games of the first ever FIFA World Cup ceremony to be held in the African continent. Madiba’s attendence was confirmed by Sport and Recreation Minister Makhenkesi Stofile on Wednesday after it was reported in April that he would not be able to grace the tournament.

"Mandela has demanded to attend the World Cup. He requested four tickets for the opening and closing ceremonies, and the organisers have granted his wish," Stofile said.

But Mandela's family is saying something else.

On Thursday his grandson, Mandla Mandela insisted that the 91-year-old former South African leader was too frail to be at the opening of the World Cup and he denied claims by officials that he would attend.



"I, as a member of the family, together with the family, have taken the decision that my grandfather is 92 years, it would be really a challenge to take him out in a cold winter day to go and watch a game of football," his grandson Mandla Mandela said.

"We, as South Africans and the international community need to start considering his health. I really know that he'll not be at the opening match."

Asked about the statements from the government and ANC that Madela had requested four tickets which were happily granted by the organiser, Mandla Mandela said: "I don't know where they take that from."

A spokesman for the ruling African National Congress also told AFP that Mandela "will be attending the opening and closing matches of the World Cup".

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Tags: SWC   Mandela   Madiba  


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