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Widow's Dilemma: Residents Order Graca Machel off Nelson Mandela Home

After the death of her second husband - residents of Qunu have sent a stern warning to Graca Machel - Nelson Mandela's widow - they wan...

After the death of her second husband - residents of Qunu have sent a stern warning to Graca Machel - Nelson Mandela's widow - they want her out of the late freedom fighter's house - immediately.  

Even though a court decided Graca should inherit the property from her late husband - villagers have a different cultural opinion.

“No woman must stay in another woman’s house. Graca Machel has no right to be there. I don’t care what the judges are saying because they’re wrong. Culturally, that house belongs to Winnie and her children,” Nokuzola said.
Graca Machel Hold the Late Nelson Mandela at Qunu 

She said Winnie is being discriminated against simply because she has no sons.

“If she had sons none of this would be happening. It must also be known that as residents of Qunu, we’re not happy with the court’s decision – and we want Graca out of that house,” said Nokuzola, who claimed the house already belonged to Winnie.

“That house was not supposed to be in the will. That was an individual decision and that’s not how we do things here. It was supposed to be a communal decision,” said Nokuzola. She also slammed Mandla Mandela, saying he’s opportunistic.

“Mandla has no business in that house. He should be concentrating on the other site. There are two sites there but the other site is just vacant land. Nothing is built on it and that’s why Mandla is concentrating on this one,” she said.

Another resident and neighbour, who preferred not to be mentioned, told Sunday Sun residents of Qunu are not happy with the court’s decision. “We want Graca to pack her belongings and go! She’s hardly there anyway.

“I was there when Winnie got the site. It was a Saturday and she was accompanied by Holomisa. The court decision needs to be challenged because it goes against our customs and traditions,” said the resident.

But UDM leader, General Bantu Holomisa, denied that he had ever accompanied Winnie. “I wasn’t there and I never accompanied Winnie. But I know when and how Madiba got the site. I also know he used his own funds to build it,” Holomisa said.

Mandla refused to speak, saying. Winnie’s lawyer, Mvuzo Notyesi, said: “We’ve applied for leave to appeal which will be heard on 19 June this year.

“We’re advancing our facts and we believe we have a chance of success this time,” Mvuzo said. Last week Graca Machel’s representative, Vimla Naidoo, told the SunTeam: “She won’t be able to comment because she’s not around. She’s travelling.”

Spokesman of the Mandela Foundation, Sello Hatanga refused to comment. 

During a recent trial, it was arguet that while Nelson Mandela divorced his wife through the courts following her alleged infidelity, the couple never dissolved their traditional marriage so she is still his legitimate heir. 

They also argued that his wife had been given the land by the local tribal king while her husband will still in prison. Graca the widow of former South African president Nelson Mandela and of Mozambican president Samora Machel. - Online Sources/ 

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