Dec. 10 - Thousands of mourners arrive at Johannesburg's Soccer City stadium for Nelson Mandela's memorial, which dozens of world leaders will be attending. Rough Cut (No reporter narration)
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Thousands of mourners began to arrive on a rainy Tuesday morning (December 10) at Johannesburg's Soccer City stadium, for a memorial ceremony to celebrate the life of anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela. Ordinary South Africans will be joining scores of leaders from across the world to honour a leader whose life of imprisonment and political struggle made him a global symbol of integrity and forgiveness. Among the 90 leaders who will pay homage are U.S. President Barack Obama, Cuba's Raul Castro, Iran's Hassan Rouhani and Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe. Singing songs, dancing and waving flags, the crowds queued under umbrellas in the wet grounds. In the same soccer stadium 23 years earlier, Mandela was cheered by supporters after he was freed from prison and hailed as the hope for a new South Africa. Huge screens in three other soccer stadiums in Johannesburg, South Africa's largest city and commercial hub, will relay the memorial service to hundreds of thousands more mourners, with others following from around the country. A huge security operation is in force, and private cars are banned from the area around the Soccer City stadium, with citizens being asked to travel there by public transport. Coinciding with U.N.-designated Human Rights Day, the memorial service in the 95,000-seat stadium is the centrepiece of a week of mourning for the globally-admired statesman, who died on Thursday (December 5) aged 95.