Finally president Uhuru got cleared to attend part of Mandela’s funeral celebrations, the kenyan president is listed among the dignitaries to attend a mass public gathering open to all and sundry on a first come first serve basis.
A source at statehouse Nairobi told this reporter that finally diplomatic pressure had yielded some fruits with the retired queen of the Netherlands -Beatrix smoothening Uhuru’s way to Southern Africa.
The quiet but globally powerful queen was the only Western world leader who was very close to Mandela, it is said that upon Mandela’s release the dutch queen offered him a home in Netherlands where Mandela spent some time before embarking on a world tour.
After Graca Machel made Mandela’s wish known statehouse operative were in a panic mood and a series of meeting and long telephone calls finally got the dutch royalty to intervene.
Raila Odinga is invited to special part of the celebration in Qunu the home village of the freedom icon.
The memorial service for the South African anti-apartheid icon will be held on Tuesday at the FNB Stadium, ahead of his final send-off at his rural home in Qunu, Eastern Cape on December 15.
Over 50 world leaders, including US President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle, will also attend the memorial service to pay their last respect to one of the worldâ€™s greatest â€“Nelson Mandela. Following the large number of high profile dignitaries expected at the service, security is at its peak in South Africa.
In his condolence message to President Jacob Zuma and the people of South Africa on Friday, President Kenyatta described the former South African President as an exceptionally transformational leader who was gifted with unique, admirable abilities and strong values.
â€œHe believed in the noble principles of equity, justice, cohesiveness and inclusiveness in governance. He had faith and confidence in the ability of his people to realize the dream of a free, united and prosperous South Africa,â€ President Kenyatta said.
The President said Mandela lived and worked for a world in which people should live together in peace and tranquility regardless of colour, race or religion.
He said the African patriarchâ€™s strong belief in Africa and its people epitomized the best of the Pan-Africanism spirit.
â€œHis courage to confront apartheid transcended across the world and propelled the fight against colonialism and discrimination,â€ President Kenyatta said.
The plane carrying the Kenyan Head of State and his delegation touched down at Waterkloof Military Airbase in Pretoria shortly after 9.00 p.m. South African time.