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’He brought light to darkness,’ - tributes continue to pour in Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Archbishop Desmond Tutu. File image.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu. File image.

Published Dec 31, 2021


Johannesburg - The body of the late Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu will lie in state at Cape Town’s St George’s Cathedral for two days from Thursday where thousands of mourners are expected to pay their last respects.

Tutu died in Cape Town on Sunday.

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Hundreds of South Africans are expected to pay their respects to him in the coming days as his body lies in state.

World leaders, billionaires and presidents have continued to pay their tributes.

President Cyril Ramaphosa

“A patriot without equal; a leader of principle and pragmatism who gave meaning to the biblical insight that faith without works is dead.”

Archbishop of Cape Town, Thabo Makgoba

“Archbishop Tutu’s legacy is moral strength, moral courage and clarity. He felt with the people. In public and alone, he cried because he felt people’s pain. And he laughed — no, not just laughed, he cackled with delight when he shared their joy.”

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His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. File image.

The Dalai Lama, the Tibetan spiritual leader who had struck up a friendship with Archbishop Tutu

“He was a true humanitarian and a committed advocate of human rights,” he wrote in a letter to Archbishop Tutu’s daughter Mpho Tutu van Furth saying: “I am convinced the best tribute we can pay him and keep his spirit alive is to do as he did and constantly look to see how we too can be of help to others.”

John Steenhuisen, the leader of the DA

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“A true South African giant has left us, but his spirit will live on in the everyday kindness we South Africans show each other, and in our continued effort to build a united, successful, non-racial SA for all.”

ARCHBISHOP Emeritus Desmond Tutu laughs as comedian Pieter Dirk Uys does his impression of the archbishop during the official opening of the new service delivery headquarters for Community Aids Response (CARE). Also present at the event were Judge Edwin Cameron and Dr Kenneth Kaunda, head of the African Union's HIV/Aids portfolio. | Shayne Robinson African News Agency (ANA)

British billionaire and founder of the Virgin brand Richard Branson on teaching the Arch how to swim

“He was a fast learner and was soon splashing by us with plenty of giggles,” Branson said, describing Archbishop Tutu as “one of the most positive, funny, life-affirming people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing”.

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Former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela

“He was one of the best among us. He brought light to darkness and lightness to heaviness.”

Former US President Barack Obama

“The cleric was grounded in the struggle for liberation and justice in his own country, but also concerned with injustice everywhere. He never lost his impish sense of humour and willingness to find humanity in his adversaries. ”

ARCHBISHOP Desmond Tutu attends a Kick TB campaign at Andile Primary School in Gugulethu. Picture by Brenton Geach African News Agency (ANA)

US President Joe Biden

“Desmond Tutu followed his spiritual calling to create a better, freer, and more equal world. His legacy transcends borders and will echo throughout the ages.”

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson

“Tutu will be “remembered for his spiritual leadership and irrepressible good humour.”

The Nelson Mandela Foundation

“Tutu was larger than life. His contributions to struggles against injustice, locally and globally are matched only by the depth of his thinking about the making of liberatory futures for human societies. He was an extraordinary human being, a thinker, a leader, a shepherd.

Martin Luther King’s daughter, Bernice King

“He was a global sage and powerful pilgrim on Earth. We are better because he was here.”

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

“Archbishop Tutu will be remembered for his optimism, his moral clarity, and his joyful spirit. He was an icon for racial justice and beloved across the world. It was only two years ago that he held our son, Archie, while we were in South Africa – ‘Arch and The Arch’ he had joked, his infectious laughter ringing through the room, relaxing anyone in his presence. He remained a friend and will be sorely missed by all.”

The Saturday Star