Government prepares for Ambassador Modise's send off

Monday, June 25, 2018

The Official Memorial service for the late Ambassador Billy Modise will take place at the Department of International Relations and Cooperation’s (DIRCO) offices in Pretoria on Tuesday morning.

The service will be held at 11am at the Oliver Tambo Building.

This was announced by the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on State Funerals at a media briefing on the preparations for the memorial and funeral for Ambassador Modise on Monday evening. The IMC, is led by Minister in the Presidency, Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma.

The 87 year-old Modise passed away on 20 June after a long illness.

He was the chief of State Security under former President Thabo Mbeki’s administration until his retirement in 2006.

Modise will receive a Special Official Funeral (Category 1) as announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa.

A Special Official Funeral entails elements of military ceremonial honours and is declared in line with the Presidency’s State, Official and Provincial Official Funeral Policy for persons of extraordinary credentials specifically designated by the President of the Republic.

As per the President’s directive, the National Flag is being flown at half-mast at every flag station in the country until Thursday, the day of the funeral.

President Ramaphosa described Ambassador Modise as a “selfless and diligent” civil servant.

Modise was the first black High Commissioner of South Africa to Sweden from 1995 up until 1999. He then was appointed as the Chief of State Protocol. He was also the recipient of the National Order of Luthuli and Ubuntu Award.

“He will be remembered as a committed activist, humanist, diplomat, internationalist and public servant who distinguished himself in the service of the people.

“We thank South Africans and the international community for their support and messages of comfort to his family and friends,” said Dlamini Zuma.

Mourners can attend the evening prayer services which will be held at the Modise family residence on Monday between 6pm and 7pm.

“Condolence books have been placed at the Modise family residence, Union Buildings and DIRCO offices as well as diplomatic missions abroad where members of the public can express their messages of support to the family,” said the IMC.

Modise will be laid to rest on Thursday at Marks Park Sports Field, across the West Park cemetery in Johannesburg.

The ceremony will start at 9am and will be open to members of the public. -