Executors of Nelson Mandela's estate have begun the task of dividing the remaining funds and properties left behind by the late anti-apartheid leader. The "provisional inventory" was estimated at $4.1 million.
Family members, former staff, schools and the African National Congress were among the beneficiaries named in Nelson Mandela's will, his executors announced this week. The document dated back to 2004 and had been amended twice over the past decade.
Following the announcement, executor Dikgang Moseneke (pictured center) said the reading "went well" even though it had been "charged with emotion."
Mosekenke, who acts as deputy head of South Africa's Constitutional Court, is working with two others to transmit Mandela's estate: human rights lawyer and long-time friend of Mandela, George Bizos (pictured right), and the chief judge of Eastern Cape province, Themba Sangoni (pictured left).
Mandela's third wife, Graca Machel, has a right to half of the estate. His three surviving children had already received $300,000 prior to his death, but were bequeathed his Johannesburg home this week, which was to be used "as a place of gathering of the Mandela and Machel family in order to maintain its unity."
The revered South African leader also left $4,500 to a number of staff members, including his personal cook Xoliswa Ndoyiya.
"It shows me that he has been respecting me and he loved me for who I am," Ndoyiya said in reaction to the gift from Mandela while speaking at a press conference on Monday. "I am one of these people who served him for many years."
Mandela also bequeathed money to several schools, including scholarships worth $9,000 to the University of Fort Hare and the University of Witwatersrand.
The party which the anti-apartheid leader led to victory in South Africa's first democratic elections in 1994 - the ruling African National Congress - would receive between 10 and 30 percent of his royalities, according to Mandela's executors, in order to promote "policies and principles of reconciliation amongst the people of South Africa".
"He wanted to make it clear that what he believed in his life, or during his life, was transmitted to the country if not the world at large," executor George Bizos said.
Nelson Mandela passed away on December 5 at the age of 95, after battling a recurring lung infection for months. He was buried 10 days later in his hometown of Qunu in South Africa's Eastern Cape province.
He was once labeled a terrorist by the United States and Britain for his support of violent resistance to South Africa's apartheid government. He spent 27 years in prison, much of it on Robben Island, after being convicted of capital offences at the infamous Rivonia Trial.
Mandela was released in 1990 and became South Africa's first black president four years later. He retired in 1999.
The anti-apartheid leader shared the 1993 Nobel Peace Price with former President Frederik Willem de Klerk; the foundation gave the duo the prize "for their work for the peaceful termination of the apartheid regime, and for laying the foundations for a new democratic South Africa."
After leaving office Mandela became a leading figure in South Africa's fight against AIDS. He lost his only surviving son to the disease in 2005. His made his last major appearance on the world stage at the 2010 Football World Cup final.
kms/se (AP, AFP, Reuters)