tv Piers Morgan Live CNN December 10, 2013 12:00am-1:01am PST
one of a host of dignitaries attending this memorial service today. he's coming here as are ordinary south africans from all over the country here to pay their respects. but back to the issue. we entered the stadium without any questions asked and any checks. there are security people around and you can see them in the bright orange jackets. but it seemed to be fairly -- at present. they were told there were some 11,000 security personnel here on scene to make sure that this goes off without a hitch. i will need to take a listen to what one south african official from the ministry of defense had to say about their approach to
security. take a listen, john. >> should anybody do anything to disrupt this period of mourning, and finally taking and accompanying the former president to his last resting pla place. >> you hear that. they are taking security very seriously. and, john, just to point out because you may be able to hear as i speak to you. the crowds continue to come and they continue to sing. it's raining, but they are in good spirits. they are singing and dancing as they make their way into the stadium behind me. still, as i say, just less than an hour to go. the stadium still under a quarter full. this stadium holds just over 90,000 people, john. >> of course, while you were talking to us, f.w. de klerk was arriving and also, alongside with desmond tutu, we saw kofi annan. these will be the scenes of these world leaders and former world leaders who will be
arriving by the dozens to pay respects to nelson mandela. and this soccer stadium that we are now having this memorial at, and that is actually now jacob zuma. this is the current president of south africa. jacob zuma arriving. of course, he will be delivering what is, i guess, referred to as a keynote address during this memorial service. at this soccer stadium, which has played so many moments during mandela's life. it seems fitting to have his memorial there. >> absolutely, john. there could not be a more fitting venue for this memorial service for nelson mandela. this is the site of nelson mandela's last public appearance. the closing stages of the 2010 world cup. that's when we saw him along with his wife on the back of a golf cart, if you will, wrapped up against the wall.
scenes that touched the heart of many as they saw him. he looked frail. he was obviously advanced in his years. that was the last time we saw him in public in 2010. if you were to go back to time, this place behind me was also the scene of nelson mandela's first public speech. well, not first. the speech in the days after he was released. two days after he was released in february 1990. he addressed the crowds here in this stadium. so people really attach this venue with nelson mandela. he's inextricably bound with this venue behind me and it's fitting they are paying their tributes to him here today, john. >> it's the largest stadium in the african continent, but i have a feeling today it may not be big enough. thank you. >> well, let's check mandela's home where well wishers have been, as you know, coming in throngs to lay flowers and to sing and to remember him there. errol burnett has been there
gauging the mood of the people. and as we can see behind you it looks like the same scene that we just heard isha talk about at the stadium. for the most part joy celebrating nelson mandela. >> i've got to say, natalie, there's something incredibly heartwarming about what you are seeing behind me. a couple things to keep in mind this tuesday. you have this cold snap, this dreary rain storm that's covered johannesburg. it is also not a holiday today. south africans are required to work. those who have to. yet still this morning, people have shown up with their umbrellas and with their jackets to nelson mandela's, the late president's home to show appreciation. and at this moment, just in the other direction, i can tell you we've seen an increased security presence here. increased compared to what we've seen over the past few days. and that, we understand, is because nelson mandela's widow
and other close relatives could be leaving the home any moment to head to fnb stadium. but certainly, this is an emotive time for the country. on day 5 of 10 days of mourning. south africans still feel, as this group feels, that they can leave work for a short while, come pay their respects and head back. next to me is a member of this group. his name is olisila. these are your colleagues behind you. telluous you left work to come here and what the importance of today carries for you. >> we love to work because we want to respect our father of the nation, our father. that's why we left work to pay that respect to him. >> i've seen a few messages from people on social media in the last hour complaining that they will have to watch today's festivities from work, from afar because it's not a national
holiday. do you carry some of those frustrations? >> not like frustration because when you are here, they must pay that respect to you. because this time, our father -- that combination unites the nation. not to differentiate from the others, but they must pay that respect. that's why they come to respect him. that's why they saw the life. >> nelson mandela represented unity. he brought a lot for this country through his struggle in prison and, of course,
peacefully reconciling with the apartheid government and facilitating the country's first democratic elections. even though there may be frustrations about the weather and the fact this is not a public holiday. as you see, south africans still joyous of the fact they were fortunate enough to be the beneficiaries of nelson mandela's leadership. let me also show you, if we have this, an image of what we believe to be the last picture of nelson mandela taken from this year in may from inside his home here in a suburb of johannesburg. showing the late president next to his great-grandson. you can see them there in that intimate embrace holding hands. the young boy's hand on the aging icon's hand there. this was in may before his recurring lung infection. his most recent health scare before passing this -- at this past week. so we're getting a sense that
the close family and relatives may be heading to fnb stadium shortly. the weather here certainly is glom gloomy, but the consistent theme is this unified south african spirit which seems to be carrying people through the hardest times, during the worst weather and through up until this massive memorial service set to get under way in the next hour. >> thank you, errol. beautiful scene behind you and what a beautiful picture there of nelson mandela and his grandchild. >> great photo. the south african government has set up buss to take thousands of people to the stadium for the memorial service. >> many have been waiting for hours to honor the man they call madiba. more on the life of nelson mandela and how he's being honored. that is straight ahead here.
welcome back. we are live. these are pictures of johannesburg as they prepare for the memorial for nelson mandela. as you can see, it is quite a rainy day in johannesburg. it's not expected to let up. but we've seen people dancing in puddles of rain undaunted by the weather on this special day for them. >> so many people are expected to turn up for this memorial service. there was one interesting tidbit there. the authority there have asked parents who are bringing children younger than 8 to
physically write on their arms the mobile phone number in case the children get lost. they are expecting so many people. and so many young people to turn up on this day. >> that's a very good point that someone thought of there. dignitaries from around the world are arriving right now in johannesburg to celebrate the life of nelson mandela. we've been seeing many of the world leaders arriving. thousands of south africans have been lining up outside the stadium as leaders arrive inside. the stadium, of course, where mandela delivered his first major speech after his release from prison so many years ago. the memorial begins now less than an hour, about just 40 minutes from now. and you will see it live right here on cnn. >> and cnn's arwa damon has been on a packed bus, one of the many heading from soweto to the fnb stadium. she's with isha outside the stadium.
and i guess, when you look at the number of people who are crowded on to the bus, it's just a sign that so many people just want to get there to that stadium just to be part of this incredible day. >> yeah, indeed, john. thank you. arwa, you made the journey with some of these crowds that are making their way to fnb stadium. we see them streaming in behind us. what was it like? >> it was pretty incredible. some of these people told us they were waiting for three hours. >> three hours? >> yeah. we made the journey from soweto where mandela lived before he was imprisoned. one of the main epicenters of the uprising against apartheid. the struggle against apartheid. people didn't seem to be that fazed by the three-hour wait for the buses, despite the fact it is raining. then they were dropped off and had to walk another 45 minutes or so to be able to get here. some of the older members, one elderly woman jumped a ride in our car that was doing runs back and forth trying to facilitate
the whole process. >> i am going to ask you about the mood. it's joyful. what was it like on the journey here? >> i actually couldn't stop smiling. i couldn't stop laughing because this bus we were on was so crammed with people. at one point a couple of men right next to the door almost fell out because the bus driver wasn't actually able to close the door. people were singing. walking in the rain, they were dancing. children were running up to us, screaming into the camera, i'm free. and that's really what it boils down to. yes, on the one hand this is a nation in mourning but you get the sense that right now people are really celebrating all that it was that mandela gave to them and how he utterly transformed this. you can't just help but be carried by people's emotions. you ask them if they are feeling sad and they say, no, we're happy he's resting in peace and look what he's been able to do to us. look what we're able to do right now today because of everything that he's done. and you are just carried by these emotions despite the fact
that it's still raining outside. people are still coming. >> this stadium as we've been telling our viewers all morning long has a capacity of 90,000-plus. you took a close look at the security preparations. what was your takeaway? >> south africa has on the one hand experience dealing with this because of the 2010 world cup and other events they've hosted, although organizers were telling us they were actually anticipating two times the number of people that they would need to move compared to the world cup. so in terms of transportation, they were supposed to be running buses. in terms of security, this is the single largest event this country has ever had to secure because of all the dignitaries that are here and, of course, because of all of the people. so they were telling us they've deployed thousands of military, police and we were on site here yesterday. we came across one of the special forces units that normally run undercover secret
operations. they were tasked with clearing the stadium and securing it so the nation most certainly is bringing out its best when it comes to making sure this goes off without a hitch. they were also telling us they are prepared are go eventuality. they have ongoing air surveillance, helicopters, fighter jets. they have units that would be deployed should that worst case scenario come out. and they were very harsh in their rhetoric. should anyone try to disrupt this mourning period for nelson mandela, those people would be dealt with immediately. >> yeah, yeah. as you hear the south african government saying they are ready and they'll take a hard line with anyone who causes any trouble. just as we toss it back to you, another big group of people going past and once again, the sair full of song. >> the celebration continues. and it's only just getting started. isha and arwa, thanks. back to natalie. >> so many people around the world have found so much meaning in nelson mandela's life.
23 minutes past 10:00 in the morning in johannesburg. the rain there still falling. but that is not keeping thousands of people from heading to that stadium to honor nelson mandela. >> you can tell they are ready, can't you? it's nice to see their faces close up. a memorial service for the civil rights icon and former south african president begins as we've been saying in less than an hour. just a little over 30 minutes. prime ministers, presidents,
celebrities and thousands of south africans are gathering right now. >> u.s. president barack obama landed in johannesburg a short time ago along with his wife michelle and a delegation that includes his predecessor george w. bush. >> who is stepping off right behind president obama there and prime minister david cameron arriving there in south africa to attend observances and former south african president f.w. de klerk is there. he shared the nobel peace prize with mandela in 1993. >> okay. mandela spent 27 punishing years behind bars for his struggle against apartheid. but when he was finally released from prison he strove for forgiveness and unity. >> from mandela's close associate to admirers who stood in long lines to shake his hand, many people carry very special memories of him. >> we'd like to bring you now some mandela remembrances from people who gathered to pay him tribute outside london's south
african embassy. >> my father names cantor was one of the accused at the trial. and my mother was pregnant with me at the time. and my father passed a note down the dock to madiba to say as an adjunct of the more dubious roles you've held it would be a great honor if you could be our baby's godfather. he passed the note back saying the honor would be all mine and then they dare not hang me. so it was quite an extraordinary thing to have him for those days. >> i had the pleasure of meeting him many years ago, many decades ago. he was full of wit and full of charm. and he had an aura. as soon as he entered the room. the feeling comes from the people who have incorporated in themselves the highest values of humanity. >> when he came out of jail,
there was a big rally in which i was standing there. how are you? how are you? so i touch his hand. that is mandela. >> the legacy really is all about freedom, opportunity for all south africans. and it was really dignity that was involved in that because there was no dignity in those days. >> you don't have to say very much more. i think in the time to come you take the name madiba or mandela. you probably won't have to say much more. >> many things have been done in the name of mandela. today i'm here in britain, a place i've never dreamt of coming in through mandela. mandela opens the door. the doors that are closed for everybody. we salute him. >> and we are about to hear many more stories and reflections on nelson mandela coming up here. thank you for watching "cnn newsroom." i'm natalie allen. >> stay with us.
unprecedented public memorial service. this is likely the largest gathering of world leaders. bigger than the funeral of pope john paul ii. bigger than winston churchill. no place has hosted this many presidents, princes and prime ministers at once. president obama, three former u.s. presidents. the head of more than 90 other nations will be here paying their respects to a man who transformed south africa from a pariah into a modern nation with a place on the world stage. it's 10:30 here in johannesburg. 3:30 on the east coast of the united states. we welcome all your viewers in the u.s. and around the world. i'm joined here at fnb stadium by chief international correspondent christiane amanpour and robin kernow. >> it's electric. the rain they say here is good luck. they truly believe it.
of course, the rain is doing a little bit to slow down some of the public transport which was specifically laid on to bring in the thousands and thousands and tens of thousands who needed to get here because the government has been announcing on the television, don't drive your cars. buses will be here for you. trains will be here for you. everything is free. but you can imagine it takes a little bit of time. i've seen president f.w. de klerk here always very moving to talk to him. he was the partner of nelson mandela in bringing down aparthe apartheid. zelda legrange is here. all the old mandela friends. all the people who were in jail with him. and, of course, we did interview prime minister cameron as well. very important messages of support all these world leaders have about what he stood for. >> you'll be seeing a lot of pictures of world leaders behind the scenes. it's really the energy of the crowd that's extraordinary. >> this is going to be a
people's funeral in a sense. it's not just here at this big soccer stadium. there are other stadiums across south africa where people are gathering. huge screens in public parks. i don't think anybody is going to work today. if they're at work they are no doubt watching the television. i think what's extraordinary about these songs is that many south africans will remember them. they keep on getting repeated over and over again. and it's sort of a play list of lament. a lot of these songs refer to the time when mandela was in prison. so they often sing things like, when will we see you again. there's no one like you. and so they evoke the time when he was away in the same way, now he's gone. and there is this sense of loss. but the sense that he hasn't gone away forever. >> and music, it has to be said, is what kept his spirit up in jail in robben island. global muzigs as well who kept his spirit alive with music. they made that famous anthem,
"free mandela." >> you can see the rain pouring down. it's not dampening the spirits of the people. it's certainly true. a lot of umbrellas out. people have been here for hours. they are trying to control the crowds. slowly letting them in now trying to get kind of some sense of order. but again, we're seeing behind the scenes a number of world leaders beginning to arrive. president obama, we're told, is here. he spoke to david cam ran of great britain. >> exactly right. president obama will be reading one of the tributes here. a number of world leaders will be. also jacob zuma and, indeed, that may be the secretary-general. he will be, too, as well. this stadium, of course is so significant. this is where mandela came. we're very near soweto, the township. this is where he came shortly after being released from robben island, from jail and gave his first speech. it's also the site of his last official public appearance. this was where one of the
matches of the soccer world cup in 2010 was held. and this is where mandela was, you know, taken around with his wife on the golf cart. 95,000 people on their feet cheering him then. the last time that south africa saw him in a professional role. >> there you can see the rugby team. the south african rugby team in their official kit. iconic moment, mandela dressed in his jersey. that symbolized the beginning of this reconciliation where he really acknowledged that he represented a -- this is his funeral because it's this unwielding mixture of different types of people. he managed to be an every man to everyone. >> well, that rugby moment, of course, everybody knows. and americans know and the world knows through the victim
"invictus." >> also the significance of funerals in the struggle of the anti-apartheid struggle. often that was the only place that people were actually allowed to gather. so it was often at funerals in stadiums that people would gather and after which they would often be bloodshed. >> and even more violence in a way -- the funerals beget more funerals. they were one way people could voice their anger. >> i want to bring in isha who is outside the stadium. what's the scene there? are you in terms of people trying to come in? >> well, anderson, the crowds continue to stream in. as we approach start time for this memorial, we see that the crowds are growing in number. of course, they are making a dash for it because the rain is coming down really heavily. as we've been here for a number of hours and have seen the crowds make their way to the
stadium, they've been as you have been saying, they've been singing and they have been dancing. we have been seeing a lot of them with south african flags. wearing the south african colors. all of them joyous and celebratory as they gather to remember nelson mandela. anderson? >> it is a scene of excitement. people really coming -- it's difficult transportation as christiane said. it's difficult even in the best of times. a lot of people do not have access to a vehicle their own. getting here is a real effort especially in the rain. >> they are coming from all over. >> i think also another reason for these empty seats and the fact this probably is going to start a whole lot much later, is because the accreditation process. they were quite insistent that not only journalists but visit ing were credited. they tried to police it so not that just anybody could come in
here. that's been problematic. a lot of their -- a lot of people haven't had accreditation yet. that's held things up. it's a celebration of this remarkable man. >> there's not a lot of props. sometimes we like to show a few props, but i think this will be a collector's item. i don't know whether you can see it there, but this is the order of service, the official program for this memorial service. and then we have also this tribute newspaper. huge cheers go up as they see various different world leaders coming. but this is the tribute newspaper for today. so these will be collector's items. i'm here to tell you. >> you are putting them back in your handbag. >> i am. >> i want to bring in jill dougherty who has been monitoring the comings and goings of various world leaders. the logistical operation here and the diplomatic protocol has got to be -- an incredibly difficult thing for organizers
here to try to coordinate. >> it is because each individual country has to do its own coordination, its own security, and then when they all gather together, it's really quite a mixture. you have everybody from raul castro to president barack obama and many other world leaders. so politically, they collide and in many different ways, historically, they collide. when you get to the united nations, they can kind of -- they can kind of choreograph it so that somebody will, if they want to, say inadvert lenient meet somebody in a hallway or avoid somebody that they don't want to meet. here it's much more kind of a big jumble with all of these 91 heads of state. presidents of six nations, et cetera. it's pretty, pretty difficult. in a way, i think that does symbolize nelson mandela because he brought together not only, let's say, western, european,
capitalist countries that later came on board and were opposed to apartheid but also the socialist nations. we're going to see a number of people from nations of africa and other latin america who more identify with this socialist communist side of things which was very active back in the 1950s and '60s in supporting revolutionary movements. and nelson mandela is kind of -- has feet in both worlds, so to speak. >> you are seeing small crowds of people. people being allowed in and kind of making their way to seats. let's just watch and listen to the sights and the sounds of inside the stadium here. >> tony blair coming in at the moment. and just remember, nelson mandela was incredibly critical of tony blair and george bush in the lead-up to iraq. he didn't mince his words. he called tony blair the united
states' foreign minister. and he called george bush a man who didn't know what he was thinking. this was a man twhen cawhen it dip loam aerks he had very, very clear ideas of right and wrong and didn't let anybody off the hook. he knew he could use his moral advantage to hold people up. >> and i think we should be careful about his politics as well. certainly there are many in various conservative spheres who still accuse him of being a communist or socialist, but he foresaw that coming out of prison and in all the years he was in prison. in fact, there's a great anecdote that one of the authors who wrote about him recounts. and that is, when he first came out of prison and as they were discussing what the presidency would be like and the government, he wanted to nationalize industry and banks. he went to davos, that talk-a-thon annual economic talk-a-thon in europe and there before he was president, people said to him you can't do that.
he was very mindful of what happened in nearby mozambique when they had their liberation movement. and they got rid of all the brain power and skills. he said, no, we can't do that. >> we're going to take a short break. our coverage continues for the next several hours. again, this is probably not going to start on schedule. the stadium is not yet full. the world leaders are still arriving here. we'll take a short break. our coverage continues on cnn in just a moment. [ male announcer ] at his current pace,
joined by christiane ammanpour. >> this is francois, the former captain of the rugby team. he plays a very important role in the post-apartheid story of south africa and a relationship with nelson mandela. i'm going to turn to him right now. thank you for being with us on this day. >> it's my pleasure. >> you are wearing the famous jacket which used to be such a symbol of you, of the whites of oppression in this country and yet this is what turned this -- this country around. >> yes, i actually asked my two sons, what should i wear. they said, dad, you've got to wear this. because if it wasn't for mr. mandel mandela, this emblem wouldn't have survived. rugby was a hated sport and mr. mandela when he came out of prison actually said to them, these are our boys. they play for us.
we have to embrace them. and it was really difficult for the anc to get that. fortunately prevailed. because what happened in our country, 1995, you cannot describe in words. i had a sense it was -- but the weeks and the months later it was such a healing moment for our sport. and mr. madiba sensed that. >> he was wearing your jersey with the number 6 on it. >> so he didn't tell you in advance he was going to wake your jersey? >> you can imagine you are playing in the biggest match you'll ever play in in your life and the emotion is going through you as a captain. you focus on making sure the guys aren't too focused, too tense. >> what mr. mandela said to me there, i wanted to hug him. he said to me, thank you very much what you've done for this country. i couldn't believe it. i said, mr. mandela, thank you
for what you've done for this country. >> and when you saw him in your jersey, what did you think? >> i bit my lip so hard. i wanted to cry. honestly, i was ready to go play and we didn't know he was going to come into the changing room. he walks in and has this on. unbelievable. emotional. and then he walks out. my number was on his back. i knew i wouldn't be able to hold it. i was so, so proud. >> and then you won and he handed you the trophy and then you became a friend and your kids were his godchildren. >> that to me is why i'm emotional about mr. mandela. obviously the sporting moment was very special. my oldest son was born. in the wee hours of the morning,
it was madiba. he said he wanted to be his godfather. now when the news broke that mr. mandela has passed, it was late at night. i just arrived to my hotel and just switched off my phone and watched television all night and watched what you were saying about mandela and all the stations around the world, and i became very emotional because of that special bond. >> we appreciate you being here, francois pienaar. thank you so much. we'll take a short break. our coverage from johannesburg continues in just a moment. zçjzmó
continuing coverage of the memorial service for nelson mandela in soweto and fnb stadium in johaners bur ernesbj. people continue to stream into the stadium to pay their respects and celebrate the life and legacy of nelson mandela. we've just seen the family of mandela on the field. i'm joined by robin kurnow also christian ar christiane amanpour. >> you know, sport, i have to say, everybody knows. that's why everybody loves sport so much. it just gets to the heart of everything. politics, culture, emotion. and a sense of belonging. >> exactly. >> who you are. >> of nation building. and look here. >> let's listen in.
we're going to be seeing a continuation of a number of world leaders continuing to come in. i'm also joined by richard stengel joining us from new york who spent a lot of time with nelson mandela. wrote a wonderful book about nelson mandela. he joinses in our new york studio. as you watch these scenes, explain the importance of funerals in the tradition in the anti-apartheid movement. this really was -- there is a long tradition of events like this. though certainly nothing of this magnitude. the world has frankly never seen anything of this magnitude. >> there is indeed a long tradition of that. during the anti-apartheid struggle, funerals became a basis where so many protesters came out. great protest songs and
revolutionary songs were sung. it's appropriate this is at fnb stadium, bordering soweto. i was with nelson mandela and was at the memorial service at fnb stadium which was a very important trigger point in south african history. so i think he might be smiling on the fact that all of these people are in the stadium. it will bring back those days to him and to others during the height of the apartheid struggle. and it just seems very appropriate that this is exactly where his funeral is being done. >> the memorial service is happening here. obviously, his casket won't be here. we don't expect it anyway. could be a last-minute surprise. you are absolutely right. it's not going to be here. but you are talking about chris harney and all that terrible violence that happened just before the '94 elections. and some say that the way
mandela reacted and calmed the people, they believe he became president even then. before he was even elected. describe for us his pivotal role in stopping this country from descending into civil war before even the first election could be held. >> why the way he reacted to the assassination was instructive. he was incredibly calm. he understood this was a critical point in south african history. it was he, rather than f.w. de klerk who went on national south african television that evening to talk to the nation to calm the nation. and even then, and it was emblel attic of him. even there on the night chris hanne, one of his closest associates was assassinated, he said we must reconcile with each other. we must forget the past and move on. i think in some ways it was at that very moment that he became president long before the election. and people thought of him as the person who would bring black and white together in south africa which is exactly what he did do.
>> and i just want to add, you spent a lot of time with him. this is his memorial service. what we're also going to see is the funeral and we will very much be seeing a playout of western and african, particularly close traditional values through that. that plays into mandela as a leader. i know you've written about that. how the leadership came from the lessons he learned in the hills, listening to the tribal elders. >> he was raised. adopted by the king of the tembu tribe. he wtalked about the virtues of listening. the tribal leader. the king he said at the tribal meetings was always the last to speak. he would listen to everyone, all the elders speak and finally he'd speak himself and then speak in order to find consensus. that's often how mandela ran
cabinet meetings when he was president. i remember seeing him even before he was president talking to his group of aides and, again, he was always the last to speak. he'd listen to what everyone said. and he told me many times he wanted to be he was one of the few people in the early years it was very important to reconcile that the tribal leaders and traditional african leadership. that would be an extraordinary event. >> i want to welcome our viewers now. it is the top of the hour. i'm anderson cooper. we have live at fnb stadium where the world is gathering to remember nelson mandel
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