The family said in a statement said that Winnie had died after a long illness, for which she had been in and out of hospital since the start of the year.
South Africa on Tuesday paid heartfelt tributes to Winnie Mandela, who died aged 81, as politicians hailed her as an inspirational anti-apartheid campaigner and defended her often controversial record.
Even before they were separated by Nelson Mandela's long stay in prison, she had become politicised, being jailed for two weeks while pregnant for participating in a women's protest against apartheid restrictions on blacks. When she spoke out about being called by her husband's name because she was a woman:3.
The following year, she was convicted of kidnapping and assault over the killing of Stompie Moeketsi, a 14-year-old boy.
In 1957, when she met Mandela, she was a social worker in Johannesburg, researching the link between racism, poverty and high infant mortality rate. "May God grant her soul eternal rest and may perpetual light shine upon her", she said.
To the black nation that emerged from South Africa's apartheid, Winnie Mandela was the "mother".
Rep. Cubelo: EPA Chief Scott Pruitt's "corruption scandals are an embarrassment"
White House chief of staff John Kelly reportedly also called Pruitt on Tuesday to reiterate his support for the head of the EPA. After failing to win approval from the West Wing, Pruitt used a little-known legal manoeuvr to push the pay increases through.
Winnie Madikizela Mandela talks to Nelson Mandela and his wife Graca at her Winnie's 70th birthday celebrations held at Voda World in Midrand. "Condolences to her close family and friends".
It said it will release details of her memorial and funeral services when they are finalised.
Suggestions that Winnie remained extremely close to Nelson Mandela in his final years were fuelled in a recent book by his doctor.
Speaking outside Madikizela-Mandela's home on Soweto's Vilakazi Street ‚ Ramaphosa said the country lost a leader and an icon.
With all her complexities the struggle icon will be remembered for her exceptional fighting spirit, activism and for being a symbol of promise for a liberatory future. She had also suffered from diabetes for some years. Faith and Courage: "Praying with Mandela" he recalls an early occasion with the Release Mandela campaign when he travelled to see her in Bradfort in Free State where she had been banished by the apartheid government. Mandela accused his estranged wife of adultery, telling a divorce court Monday, March 18, 1996, that he was determined to end a marriage that "exists only on paper".
She was handed a fine and a two-year suspended sentence on appeal.