South Africa is shocked and grieving Nelson Mandela has died after a long illness . President Zuma called his predecessor and founder of the democratic South Africa "the greatest son of the nation" . He called on South Africans to unity. Pretoria ( AP) - South Africa's national hero Nelson Mandela is dead 95 -year-old died on Thursday evening at 20.50 clock local time ( 19.50 CET clock ) , South African President Jacob Zuma said on Thursday night in a nationally televised TV special broadcast . " Our nation has lost her greatest son . Our nation has lost a father. " The founder of the democratic South Africa was peacefully passed away surrounded by his family , Zuma said , all dressed in black, with a depressed voice. This was a moment of " deepest sorrow " for all South Africans .
" Nelson Mandela brought us together and together we say goodbye to him," Zuma said. Mandela's tireless fight for freedom did the Nobel Peace introduced the respect of the world.
Read also: Nelson Mandela - an obituary
U.S. President Barack Obama called the late Nobel Peace Prize winner , a great role model . The world has lost one of the most influential and most courageous people . UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon called Mandela as " giants for justice." He was deeply saddened by his death. " Nelson Mandela has shown us what is possible for our world and for each one of us - . Together if we believe in justice and humanity , to dream and strive to ensure "
Mandela had been treated in the South African capital in the summer because of severe pneumonia in the Medi -Clinic Heart Hospital. His last weeks had spent with his family of Nobel Peace Laureates .
South African television and radio stations are submitted from Thursday evening only funeral music . Zuma called for a national mourning . The flags of the country would be hoisted up to the day of the funeral of Mandela at half-mast . Now all South Africans should remember the values for which Madiba , his clan name was . " Let us stand on his vision , which was a society in which no one is exploited and oppressed . " The President praised the vision Mandela of a unified, non- racial, non-sexist , democratic and prosperous South Africa.
Was long months it official , Mandela is located " in a stable but critical condition ." The Mandela's ex-wife , Winnie Madikizela - Mandela , who had reported three weeks ago, the 95 -year-old could no longer speak now . "He communicated his face ," she said. Mandela was " on his deathbed " still inspiring , had his eldest daughter stressed on Tuesday the television station SABC . "I think he gives us still teaching. Lessons in patience , lessons in love, lessons in tolerance ," Makaziwe Mandela said.
Because of his struggle against the racist system of apartheid , Mandela had been sitting for 27 years in prison. In 1994, he became the first president of a democratic South Africa . Zuma had described his predecessor as " father of democracy" . Mandela paved the way for reconciliation between blacks and whites in his home country.