Last goodbye for Mam' Winnie

Thousands of South Africans are expected to fill Orlando Stadium in Soweto on Saturday morning for the struggle icon's official send-off.

Flowers were placed outside Winnie Madikizela-Mandela's home in Soweto, on 14 April 2018, ahead of official funeral proceedings. Picture:  Louise McAuliffe/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG/NEW YORK - Today South Africans bid a final goodbye to Winnie Madikizela-Mandela who has been hailed for her bravery, strength and love of her community.

WATCH: Winnie Madikizela-Mandela's official funeral

Thousands of South Africans are expected to fill Orlando Stadium in Soweto on Saturday morning for the struggle icon's official send-off.

Madikizela-Mandela passed away last week, at the age of 81.

She will be laid to rest a Fourways Cemetery.

A prayer service will take place at Madikizela-Mandela's Soweto home, where her remains will be viewed and her casket draped.

The funeral procession will then depart to the stadium where the nation will have a chance to bid farewell to woman affectionately known as Mama Winnie.

Soweto residents told Eyewitness News they will definitely attend the funeral service.

“She didn’t move to any other area that would suit her lifestyle. She stayed here with us and we respect her so much.”

Several roads around the stadium will be closed to traffic.

No cars are being allowed into the area. Public transport is the only means to access the stadium.

But the Gauteng government has made transport arrangements for all those attending today's funeral.

Buses will depart from different parts of the province to Orlando stadium in Soweto.

Spokesperson Thabo Masebe says: “There are 600 buses that have been allocated to all five regions. Those are Tshwane, Johannesburg, Ekurhuleni, Sedibeng and West Rand.”

A memorial service, one of many, was held for Madikizela-Mandela at a church in Harlem, in New York, on Friday.

During the service pastor Calvin O. Butts spoke about the struggle icon’s bravery during apartheid, and how black women still face prejudice and injustice.

A memorial event also took take place at the United Nations.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)