The « fight » of Desmond Tutu « for the end of apartheid and South African reconciliation will remain in our memories », greeted Sunday the French President Emmanuel Macron, after the announcement of the death of the icon of the fight against apartheid in South Africa. The religious, Nobel Peace Prize winner, « devoted his life to human rights and the equality of peoples, » recalls the Head of State in a tweet, adding his voice to the international concert of tributes to the former Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town.
Nobel Peace Prize winner in 1984, Desmond Tutu dedicated his life to human rights and the equality of peoples.
His fight for the end of apartheid and South African reconciliation will be remembered.
— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) December 26, 2021
First to react, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa expressed « his deep sadness at the death » of this « unequaled patriot ». His death « is a new chapter of mourning in our nation’s farewell to a generation of exceptional South Africans who left us a liberated South Africa. » Former US President Barack Obama praised the memory of the man he described as a “mentor” and “beacon”.
Friend of the Dalai Lama
For his part, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Twitter « deeply saddened to learn of the death of Archbishop Desmond Tutu ». “He was an essential figure in the struggle against apartheid and in the struggle for the creation of a new South Africa. We will remember him for his spiritual leadership and his irrepressible good humor, ”he added.
For Bobi Wine, leader of the Ugandan opposition, “the news of the death of Archbishop Desmond Tutu is very sad”. “A giant has fallen. We thank God for his life – a full life, truly lived in the service of humanity, ”he wrote on Twitter. The Dalai Lama praised a « great man, who lived a life full of meaning », « entirely devoted to the service of his brothers and sisters ». “The friendship and the spiritual bond between us was something we cherished,” he said of his old friend.
An « inspiration » for the world
Another religious to react, the spiritual leader of the Anglicans and Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby: “In the eyes of Desmond Tutu, we saw the love of Jesus. In his voice we heard the compassion of Jesus. In his laughter, we heard the joy of Jesus. It was beautiful and courageous. His greatest love is now realized as he meets his Lord face to face. «
The group of “Sages”, created in 2007 by Nelson Mandela and which brings together public figures working on major world problems, paid homage to the Archbishop, an “inspiration” for the world whose “commitment to peace, love and equality ”will continue to“ inspire future generations ”. « The Wise Men have lost a dear friend, whose contagious laughter and mischievous sense of humor have delighted and charmed them all », reacted in a statement the group which counts in its ranks Ban Ki Moon or Jimmy Carter, and whose Desmond Tutu was the first president.
In mourning, South African cricketers also wore a black armband on the first day of a major competition against India, near Johannesburg. In France, the deputy Hugues Renson hailed a « man of peace and harmony ». The South African was « one of the figures who forged my political commitment », indicates Sandrine Rousseau. “I read you, watched you, admired you so much,” she adds.