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CT to spend R72m on Madiba

The municipality has approved a budget during a special sitting on Sunday.

Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille on Sunday said it is important that all residents get an opportunity to pay their respects to the late former president Nelson Mandela.

He passed away peacefully at his Johannesburg home on Thursday evening.

The council approved a R72 million budget for a contingency plan to honour Madiba across the metro.

The municipality on Sunday held a special sitting so that councillors could express their condolences to the Mandela family.

De Lille says she has fond memories of Madiba.

"I was privileged to have a personal relationship with Madiba. He would call me on my birthday every year. He flattered me by calling me his favourite opposition politician. He also appointed me as the first transport chair portfolio in our new democracy."

Meanwhile, the Mother City's Greek Orthodox archbishop says Mandela will forever remain a symbol of democracy and freedom.

Church leaders and members paid homage to Madiba at Saint George's Greek Orthodox Church in Woodstock earlier today.

Saint George was fuller than usual with only standing room for some.

The Greek Orthodox Church's Archbishop Sergios says Madiba's spirit will live forever.

"His passion and principles will live on."

Cypriot and Greek community members together with Russian and Bulgarian Orthodox churchgoers signed a book of condolence for the Mandela family.

Over 53 heads of states are expected to attend his memorial service in Johannesburg on Tuesday.

The 95-year-old will be laid to rest in Qunu next Sunday.