PM Harper, Canadian delegation in Pretoria to pay last respects to Mandela

South African sailors stand guard over former the casket of South African President Nelson Mandela during the lying in state at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, South Africa, Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013. The woman on the right is unidentified. (AP Photo/Kim Ludbrook, Pool)

PRETORIA, South Africa - Prime Minister Stephen Harper is in Pretoria, South Africa to pay final respects to Nelson Mandela.

Harper and a Canadian delegation travelling with him will view Mandela's body, which will lie in state for three days in an amphitheatre which now bears the Mandela name.

The mood in South Africa is expected to turn sombre after Tuesday's jubilant celebration of Mandela's life at a memorial in Johannesburg.

Mandela died last Thursday at age 95.

His body will lay in state until the weekend when a state funeral will be held for the iconic former president — the first state funeral ever held in modern South Africa.

Harper will also announce an education fund today in honour of Mandela.

The prime minister is in South Africa with a delegation that includes three of his predecessors, four premiers, two former governors general and Opposition Leader Tom Mulcair.


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