9 December 2013

South Africa: Rain Predicted for Mandela Memorial

Pretoria — The South African Weather Services has warned that there will be an 80 percent chance of rainfall in the Johannesburg area tomorrow.

According to the forecaster, Elizabeth Webster, there will be cloudy conditions and wide spread showers. "There is a possibility of a heavy rainfall," she said.

The Weather Bureau also predicts temperatures ranging from 14 to 18 degrees. In total, it is also predicted that the rainfall will measure 50mm in 24-hours.

The Memorial Service for the late former President Nelson Mandela will start at 11am at the FNB stadium, in Soweto, on Tuesday.

Briefing the media on the arrangements for the memorial service, Minister in the Presidency for Performance Monitoring and Evaluation, Collins Chabane, said the stadium's gates will open at 6am and mourners and sympathisers have been advised to use public transport to the venue as no cars will be allowed in the stadium precinct on the day.

"As we invite people to participate in this event, we must make the additional point that the body of President Mandela will not be in position at the Official Memorial Service. President Mandela will lie in state at the Union Buildings only from Wednesday, December 11 to 13 December 2013.

"Our advice is that people outside Gauteng come together in their own provinces to ensure that this is a truly nationwide event, and that people take advantage of the fact that all key events are being broadcast live.

"Provincial and local authorities have been requested to arrange transport for mourners from various parts of the country to FNB Stadium and the overflow venues at Ellis Park Stadium, Orlando Stadium and Dobsonville Stadium," he said.

With many people expected to attend the memorial service at the stadium, which has a capacity of just over 90 000, Chabane said attendance to the service will be granted on a first come first serve basis, and urged members of the public who won't get space to use other viewing sites or to follow proceedings on SABC's live broadcasts.

"Big screens will be installed at the overflow venues to allow members of the public to follow proceedings at the FNB Stadium in the company of compatriots.

"While these venues offer extensive seating, people must accept that at some stage this capacity will be filled and police and other authorities will turn people away. "We call on people to cooperate and demonstrate patience and dignity if they were to be turned away," he said. - SAnews.gov.za

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