January 8th Statements
ANC STATEMENT ON THE PASSING OF ARCHBISHOP EMERITUS DESMOND TUTU
The African National Congress joins South Africans and the global community in mourning the sad passing of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu. The Arch, who was also South Africa’s last surviving Nobel-Peace Prize laureate, passed away today (Sunday, 26 December 2021) in Cape Town at the age of 90.
Born in Klerksdorp in the North West province, Archbishop Tutu is an internationally renowned spiritual leader, anti-apartheid activist and global human rights campaigner. The Arch was not only an extraordinary human being, he also served as a reminder of the role that he and many other religious leaders played in bringing apartheid to its knees and restoring the dignity of all South Africans. His selfless service to his church and country tells the story of a man who has etched his name in the history books.
The Arch dedicated his life to the service of the people of South Africa, leading tirelessly from the front for the liberation of our country and the arduous process of building a common nationhood, which he endearingly dubbed the Rainbow Nation. During his tenure as the Chairperson of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Archbishop Tutu, pulled no punches in condemning the atrocities committed by the apartheid regime and it’s architects, against black South Africans.
Following the fall of apartheid, Archbishop Tutu campaigned for gay rights and spoke on a wide range of subjects, among them the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, his opposition and conscientised the world about climate change. He retired from public life in 2010.
Indeed the big baobab tree has fallen. South Africa and the mass democratic movement has lost a tower of moral conscience and an epitome of wisdom.
We extend our revolutionary condolences to his wife Mama Leah Tutu, his family, friends as well as colleagues at the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation.
May Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s soul rest in eternal peace.
ISSUED BY THE AFRICAN NATIONAL CONGRESS
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