Media release

Public and traffic arrangements for the State Funeral of President Nelson Mandela at Qunu, Eastern Cape

11 December 2013
11 December 2013
As the focus of preparations for the State Funeral of President Nelson Mandela shifts to the Eastern Cape, government calls on communities in Mthatha and Qunu to support the preparations and show patience where this is required.

Government also calls on media in the area to cooperate with the organising authorities, and asks that the broader public comply with requests or instructions by authorities.

This is a special moment in our country that imposes a number of unprecedented pressures on certain areas and infrastructure.

In the spirit of Working Together, all South Africans can, in big ways and small, make sure that President Mandela is afforded a fitting send-off with smooth organisation.

This call is directed especially at the communities of or visitors to Mthatha and Qunu, where President Mandela will be buried on Sunday, 15 December 2013.


One of the immediate effects on this region are road closures that are now in place and are diverting traffic away from the Qunu Operational Area.

Trucks will be diverted at:
• N2 – Tsolo to Maclear / R396
• N2 – Shell Ultra City to R61

For normal vehicles:
• N2 – Bityi Junction to Buwa Halt / Elliotdale
• N2 – Viedgesville to Mqanduli / R61
• N2 – Shell Ultra City to R61

Road control points  and possible diversion will take place from today at  the following points:
• N2 – Ndabakazi to Tsomo / R61
• N2 – Idutywa to Engcobo / R61
• N2 – Engcobo Junction to Coghlan / R61

In Mthatha, city traffic is also expected to be disrupted on Thursday afternoon and  Friday morning for rehearsals.

On Saturday – the day on which the body of President Mandela will arrive in Mthatha (or East London, depending on the weather) – a procession will move through the city centre from 11.30am.

The following roads will be closed:

All roads connecting to Sutherland, York and Nelson Mandela Drive. People are advised to avoid these areas and seek alternative routes.

They must avoid coming to the CBD during these times. People are encouraged not to use city-centre roads unless it is absolutely necessary.

The public is advised not to travel to Qunu Farm for the burial, as there will be no public access to the funeral ceremony on Sunday, December 15.

Instead, mourners are advised to use the public mourning sites at the following places:

  • Mthatha Rotary stadium
  • Mthatha 2010 stadium
  • Khaya Majola Stadium
  • Tsolo Junction
  • Lusikisiki College
  • Port St Johns sports field
  • Mvezo Village - Qunu
  • Empa  Villiage - Qunu
  • Nkalane Villiage - Qunu
  • Cofimvaba Stadium
  • Sisa Dukashe
  • Queenstown sports complex
  • Lady Grey Kwezi Naledi Hall
  • Miki Yili Stadium in Grahamstown
  • Matatiele Stadium
  • Nqadu Great Place

Accommodation is a challenge and government advises visitors and mourners to contact the office of the Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism agency  at 043 701 9654/5 or visit the website

Issued by: Government Communication and Information System (GCIS)

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