Biggest State Funeral Of Our Time; World leaders, Kings, Princesses and Celebrities Say Goodbye To Madiba

Thousands of diplomats, hundreds of current/former presidents, global icons and celebrities are today in South Africa to pay homage to the greatest man of the last century. The official state funeral of Nelson Mandela takes place today in Johannesburg in what is expected to be the largest state funeral of our generation. The South African authorities are expecting a gruelling schedule having already received over 100 presidents, prime ministers and monarchs from around the world.

From Africa, high profile figures such as Zimbabwe’s president Robert Mugabe, Nigeria’s Jonathan Goodluck, Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni and Kenya’s Uhuru Kenyatta were some of the first African presidents to arrive monday evening. From Europe, David Cameron and all his (living) predecessors are also in Johansburg while the Swedish princess, Spanish, Norwagian, English prince’s and both the Belgian and Dutch Kings are all present. In North America, president Barack Obama and all his living predecessors (Except Bush senior who is now too old for long distance travel) are also in South Africa while Canada’s prime minister Stephen Harper and three other former prime ministers are all representing Canada in Johannesburg.

Even in death, Mandela has been able to pull out an unprecedented convergence of the world’s most powerful leaders, past and present, including the current and former UN secretary generals, Ban Ki Moon and Kofi Annan. It is rare for leaders from different spectrums to be all under one roof at the same time. Today in Johannesburg, you’ll find Obama, David Cameron, Stephen Harper and the prince of England under one roof with their counterparts from China, Iran, Zimbabwe, Cuba, Israel and even the Palestinian territories. Earlier monday afternoon, the US state department confirmed that President Obama will be one of the chosen delegates to give a key note speech, meaning he will share the same stage with Cuba’s president Raul Castro. A miracle in itself.

South African department of international relations and cooperation issued a list (check below) of all the worlds heads of state who will be in attendance. In Africa, Paul Kagame of Rwanda is a notable absentee while XI Jinping of China is also missing. The official program will be administered in the soccer city stadium (FNB), which hosted the 2010 world cup final and boosts a capacity of 95, 000 people. FNB stadium is located in Nasrec, bordering Soweto where the apartheid uprising first sprung from.

Until we meet again, good bye Madiba.

Amandla, Awethu!

@RasMutabaruka

Afghanistan, His Excellency Hamid Karzai, PresidentMozambique, President of Mozambique, HE Armando Emilio Guebuza
Algeria, His Excellency Mr Abdelkader Bensalah, Speaker of the Council of the Nation (Senate) – rank above the Prime MinisterNamibia, His Excellency Hifikepunye Pohamba, President
Angola, His Excellency Mr Manuel Vicente, Vice PresidentNiger, His Excellency Issoufou Mahamdou, President
Argentina, Mr Amado Boudou, Acting President of ArgentinaNew Zealand,  Right Hon John Key, Prime Minister
Australia,  His Excellency Mr Tony Abbott, MP, Prime MinisterNigeria, His Excellency Goodluck Jonathan, President
Bahamas, Right Honourable Perry Christie, Prime MinisterNiger, His Excellency Mahamadou, President of Niger
Bangladesh, His Excellency Mr Md. Abdul Hamid MD ABDUL, PresidentNorway, His Royal Highness Haakon, Crown Prince of Norway
Belgium, His Royal Highness King PhilippePakistan, His Excellency Mr Mamnoon Hussain, President
Benin, His Excellency Boni Yayi, PresidentPalestinian State, His Excellency Mahmoud Abbas, President
Botswana, His Excellency Lt Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama, PresidentPortugal, His Excellency, Anibal Cavaco Silva, President
Brazil, Her Excellency Dilma Rousseff, PresidentSaudi Arabia, His Royal Highness Prince Muqrin bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, Crown Prince
Burundi, His Excellency Pierre Nkurunziza, PresidentSaharawi Republic, His Excellency Mr Mohamed Abdelaziz, President
Canada, His Excellency Stephen Harper, Prime MinisterSenegal, His Excellency Macky Sall, President
CHAD, His Excellency Mr Idriss Deby Itno, PresidentSerbia, His Excellency Tomislav Nikolic, President
China, His Excellency Li Yuanchao, Vice President,Seychelles, His Excellency Mr James Alix MICHEL
COMORES, His Excellency Dr Ikiliou Dhoinine, PresidentSpain, His Royal Highness Felipe de Borbon, The Prince of Asturias
Congo (Republic of the Congo ), His Excellency Mr Denis Sassou-Nguesso, PresidentSri Lanka, His Excellency Mahinda Rajapaksa, President
Sudan, His Excellency Bakri Hassan Salih, Vice President
Congo (Democratic Republic of Congo), His Excellency Joseph Kabila, PresidentSuriname, His Excellency Desire Delano Bouterse, President
Cote d Ivoire, His Excellency President Allassane Ouattara, PresidentSlovenia, His Excellency Pahor, President
Croatia, His Excellency Josipovic Ivo, PresidentSouth Sudan, His Excellency General Salva Kir Mayardit, President
Cuba, His Excellency Raul Castro Ruz, PresidentSweden, His Excellency Fredrik Reinfeldt, Prime Minister and Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Victoria.
Denmark, His Royal Highness, Crown Prince FederickSwitzerland, His Excellency Mr Ulrich Maurer, President
Djibouti, His Excellency Ismail Omar Guelleh, PresidentSwaziland, His Excellency Dr Sibusiso Dlamini, Prime Minister
Ethiopia, His Excellency Ato Hailemariam  Dessalegn, Prime MinisterSuriname, His Excellency Desire Delano Bouterse, President
Equatorial Guinea, His Excellency Mr Obiang Mbasogo, PresidentTanzania, His Excellency Dr Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, President
France, His Excellency, Francois Hollande, PresidentTimor-Leste, His Excellency Kay Rala Xanana, Prime Minister
Finland, His Excellency Sauli Niinisto, PresidentTunisia, His Excellency Mohamed Moncef Marzouki, President
Gabon, His Excellency Ali Bongo Ondimba, PresidentTrinidad and Tobago, His Excellency Mrs Kamla Persad-Bissessar, Prime Minister
The Gambia, His Excellency Prof Alhaji Dr Yahya AJJ Jammeh, President SheikhUganda, His Excellency Yoweri Kagota Museveni, President
Ghana, His Excellency John Dramani Mahama, PresidentUnited Arab Emirates, His Excellency Sheikh Nayahan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture – Special Envoy of the Emir
Germany, His Excellency Joachim Gauck, PresidentUnited Kingdom, His Royal Highness Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Prime Minister David Cameron
United States of America, His Excellency Barack Obama, President
Guyana, His Excellency Donald Ramotar, PresidentVenezuela, His Excellency Nicolas Maduro Moros, President
Guinea, His Excellency Prof Alpha Conde, PresidentZimbabwe, His Excellency Robert Gabriel Mugabe, President
India, His Excellency Pranab Mukherjee, PresidentZambia His Excellency Michael Sata, President
Ireland, His Excellency Michael D Higgins, PresidentArab States League, His Excellency Amb Samir Hosny, Minister
Italy, His Excellency Enrico Letta, Prime MinisterAfrican Union Commission, Her Excellency Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, Chairperson
Japan, His Imperial Highness, Crown Prince NaruhitoCommonwealth, His Excellency, Mr Kamalesh Sharma
Jamaica, Her Excellency, Portia Simpson Miller, Prime MinisterEuropean Council, His Excellency Mr Herman van Rompuy, President
Jordan, Her Royal Highness, Queen Rania Al Abdullah and His Excellency Prime Minister Dr Abdullah EnsourMexico, His Excellency Enrique Pena Nieto President of Mexico
Kenya, His Excellency Uhuru Kenyatta, PresidentMauritius, His Excellency Dr the Honourable Navinchandra, Prime Minister
Korea (South), His Excellency Hongwon Chung, Prime MinisterMauritania, His Excellency Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz,  President
Lebanon, His Excellency Mr Najib Mikati, Prime MinisterMalawi, Her Excellency Joyce Banda, President
Lesotho, His Excellency, T Thabane, Prime MinisterGrand Duchy of LUXEMBOURG, His Royal Highness Henry of Luxembourg, The Grand Duke
Liberia, Her Excellency Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President