"She wanted a South African nation that would heal the divisions of the past and eradicate the inequality and injustice of the present", Ramaphosa said.
Thousands of mourners crowded into a stadium in Soweto, near Johannesburg, where the campaigner was given a high-level send-off before her burial in Johannesburg.
The official funeral service for the ex-wife of the late Nelson Mandela took place in Soweto - a Johannesburg township at the forefront of the battle against apartheid where she lived.
Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, an anti-apartheid activist from her volition, was born on September 26, 1936 in Bizana in the Transkei (Eastern Cape) and died on April 2 aged 81.
The leader of the South African opposition political party Julius Malema praised the late struggle icon. He apologised for only belatedly recognising her contribution.
Dlamini-Mandela accused the media of being complicit in a long "smear campaign" against her mother. She dared to take on one of the most powerful and evil regimes of the past century, and she triumphed. He described Madikizela Mandela as courageous.
He added: "Let us honour her memory (Madikizela-Mandela) by pledging here that we will not betray the trust of her people, we will not squander or steal their resources, and that we will serve them diligently and selflessly", Ramaphosa said.
Before her death, Winnie held several government jobs.
From the afternoon of April the 2nd, when we had to share, even as our hearts were heavy, that we had lost the woman the world knew as Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, but who I simply called mum, we have been shielded from our own pain by your love for her. What do I tell them; what about those who killed their husbands for selfish gains?
Ramaphosa described her as "an advocate for the dispossessed and the marginalized" and "a voice for the voiceless".
"There were times when people could not afford a funeral and she would assist", said neighbour Gloria Searole, 31, a service consultant who went to catch a glimpse of the procession along with her daughter. I'm comforted by your presence and your palpable love for this woman we came to know as Winnie Nomzamo Madikizela Mandela.
Member of the leftist party, the Economic Freedom Fighters also attended in large numbers. We heard you, but which ANC do we go to.More news: Trump Promises To Leave Marijuana To The States
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"We see you in your suits, sell-outs". "She bandaged our wounds... we did not do the same for her", Ramaphosa said.
"You taught young women across the nation that they are just as capable, if not more capable, of standing shoulder to shoulder with men and being totally unapologetic about it", Mabuza said. "I'm sorry that we delayed this much, to this point", he said in an eulogy.
He said he felt pain when her elder daughter Zenani related her mother's suffering and how she lived a very hard life.
"Mama, the widows of Marikana are still in tears".
One of the most important measures of how someone's life has been lived is the extent to which they have touched others. "It was a life of compassion", said the president.
She provided leadership at the most hard periods and sought no reward.
"It was a spear that, throughout the darkest moments of our struggle, she wielded with great courage, unequivocal commitment and incredible skill", he said. Apartheid authorities sought to denigrate her with bitter and twisted lies, but still she rose. He continued, "Yet through everything Mama Winnie endured they could not break her, they could not silence her". Mama, you have run your race. They had two daughters together. EFF leaders encouraged their members to act with discipline during the funeral.
She said Madikizela Mandela suffered at the brutality of the Apartheid government and humiliation.
"As we bid her farewell, we are forced to admit that too often as she rose, she rose alone".
Every generation is gifted one or two people who shine as brightly as the brightest stars. She kept his name on the lips of the people.
Shortly before 17:00 on Saturday, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela reached her final earthly destination as her coffin was lowered into the grave next to that of her great-granddaughter in Fourways Memorial Park Cemetery. Zukiswa was speaking for the Madikizela family at Orlando stadium during the funeral proceedings.
Ramaphosa finished on Saturday: "She lives on in all of us". She guides our struggles. Her conscience, her convictions, left her with no choice but to resist. May her soul rest in eternal peace.