The government dispatched 600 buses which started collecting people around 4.30 a.m. to the stadium where the service took place.
After family rituals in the morning, Madikizela Mandela's body was taken to the stadium draped in the national flag. South Africans stood by the road side as the funeral procession proceeded to the stadium. Many sung liberation struggle songs, Xinhua news agency reported.
"In death, she has brought us all together, from near and far, across many nations and continents, to mourn, to pay homage, to remember and to fondly reminisce.
"In death, she has demonstrated that our many differences along political party and racial lines and the numerous disputes we may have are eclipsed by our shared desire to follow her lead in building a just, equitable and caring society," he said.
Ramaphosa said Madikizela Mandela provided leadership at the most difficult time and never demanded a reward. "We must continue to touch Mama's wounds, acknowledge her immense pain and torment, and pass on the stories of her suffering to future generations so that it may always be known that Winnie Madikizela-Mandela was a giant, a pathfinder... and forever the Mother of the Nation."
Madikizela Mandela's young sister, Zukiswa Madikizela described her sister as fearless, courageous, loving and good at street fighting.
Madikizela Mandela's daughter Zenani, broke down on the podium while paying her last respects to her mother.
Campbell said: "She was a heroine, of a whole continent, a courageous symbol of resistance for all of us. She was the eyes and ears of the world during those dark days.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)