By Vision Reporter and AFP
President Yoweri Museveni Monday evening arrived in South Africa, joining more than 90 heads of state and government scheduled to attend an extended state funeral that will culminate in Mandela's burial on Sunday in the rural village of Qunu.
The anti-apatheid icon died last Thursday surrounded by his family.
Tributes to the former South African statesman have continued to flow across the world since the news of his death was announced by South African president Jacob Zuma.
A massive security operation will swing into place as 80,000 people descend on the Soweto venue for what is seen as a final chance for grieving South Africans to unite in a mass celebration of Mandela's life ahead of the more formal lying in state.
"The world literally is coming to South Africa," said the government's head of public diplomacy, Clayson Monyela.
Soon after Mzee Mandela's death, Uganda's President Museveni sent a message to President Jacob Zuma.
He praised Mzee Mandela for giving almost his entire adult life to the struggle for the freedom of South Africa (full statement at the bottom of page)
The president was received by Deputy Minister Foreign Affairs Ebrahim Ebrahim at Air Force Base Waterkloof in Pretoria. PHOTO/PPU
President Museveni and the deputy minister shortly after his arrival in South Africa. PHOTO/PPU
In related events, the presidents of the United States and Cuba will share a rare joint stage Tuesday as world leaders shed historic rivalries to pay tribute at the funeral of South African freedom icon Nelson Mandela.
Barack Obama and Raul Castro will both offer eulogies for Mandela at a sweeping memorial service to be held at the Soweto stadium that hosted the 2010 World Cup final.
Four of Mandela's adored grandchildren will speak for his family, while neither his widow, Graca Machel, nor his ex-wife Winne Madikizela-Mandela are listed on the programme.
Uganda's role in liberation of South Africa
History of Mandela
Mandela - Condolence message from Museveni by The New Vision