Tshwane preparing for the influx of mourners

Pretoria – Preparations are underway to cater for the influx of people who will be coming to the City of Tshwane to view the late former President Nelson Mandela’s body at the Union Buildings.

The mortal remains of Madiba will be lying in state at the Union Buildings from Tuesday. The body will be transported to Union Buildings from 1 Military Hospital daily.

Members of the public will be afforded an opportunity to view the body, which will be displayed at the Amphitheatre at the Union Buildings.

Addressing the media in Pretoria on Sunday, City of Tshwane Mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa said the city had a disproportionate responsibility during the week of mourning for Madiba as many of the events were taking place in Tshwane.

“We as the City of Tshwane are like the rest of the world in pain and yet in full preparation to lay him to rest and in this regard we deemed it appropriate to indicate the state of readiness of the Capital City as welcome well-wishers.

“We appeal to members of the public and all stakeholders to cooperate with our officials who may be required to impose extra-ordinary measures to ensure the safety of all citizens and other persons descending upon our city to express their condolences and mourn the fall of nation’s founding father,” he said.

As the body will be transported to the Union Buildings, members of the public are encouraged to line-up on the streets where the cortège will be passing through.

From 1 Military Hospital, the cortège will use Kgosi Mampuru Street to Nelson Mandela Avenue and then into Madiba street and proceed to the Union Buildings.

In a bid to ease traffic congestion in the city, Ramokgopa said the roads that were closed due to construction of the Bus Rapid Transit system will be reopened for the duration of the mourning period.

He added that a 24-hour team had been set up to ensure that traffic lights along the route were working,  road markings and guidance signs were set up, that the grass is cut and the areas is kept tidy.

Provision has been made for those people who will not make it to the stadium. They will be able to follow proceedings at the Public Viewing Areas.

These will be in Mabopane indoor centre, Giant Stadium in Soshanguve, Suurman Community Hall in Hammanskraal, Lucas Moripe Stadium in Attridgeville, Absa Sports Ground in Olivenhoutbosch, Refilwe community hall, University of Pretoria Mamelodi Campus and Bronkhostspruit Sports Complex.

The Mayor said the city was preparing for every eventuality during the week of mourning, including the increase in traffic. A focus has been placed on services such as waste removal, safety and security, emergency and medical service and management, crowd management and traffic control.

“The city has a reasonable resource capacity in the form of human resources and equipment to manage the event and all its risk manifestations.  Each role player has its own institutional arrangements in place even though the risk is dynamic and for ever increasing as a result of people flocking in the city for the event,” said Ramokgopa.

He appealed to members of the public and stakeholders to cooperate with officials.

The city’s memorial service will be held at the Lucas Moripe Stadium on Thursday. – SAnews.gov.za

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About Alan

My ethos is espoused in the words of Nelson Mandela: “I have fought against white domination and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the idea of a democratic and free society. If need be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”

You will always find me standing on the side of the underdog OR HERE.