NAIROBI, Kenya Dec 26 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has joined fellow world leaders in mourning South Africa’s anti-apartheid hero and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Desmond Tutu who died on Sunday aged 90 years.
Tutu, described as the country’s moral compass, died on Sunday aged 90, sparking an outpouring of tributes for the outspoken Nobel Peace Prize winner. His death was announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa who described him as “a patriot without equal; a leader of principle and pragmatism who gave meaning to the biblical insight that faith without works is dead.”
The small-statured Tutu, who had largely faded from public life in recent years, was remembered for his easy humour and characteristic smile — and above all his tireless fight against injustices of all colours.
In a message of condolence to President Cyril Ramaphosa, the People of the Republic of South Africa, and the family of the departed Nobel Laureate, President Kenyatta mourned the ever-smiling Archbishop Desmond Tutu as an African icon of freedom, peace and reconciliation.
“The passing away of Archbishop Desmond Tutu is a big blow not only to the Republic of South Africa where he leaves behind huge footprints as an anti-apartheid hero but to the entire African continent where he is deeply respected and celebrated as a peacemaker.
“Through his distinguished work over the years as a cleric, freedom fighter and peacemaker, Archbishop Tutu inspired a generation of African leaders who embraced his non-violent approaches in the liberation struggle,” President Kenyatta mourned the former head of the South African Anglican Church.
President Kenyatta wished Ramaphosa, South Africans and the family of the departed prelate God’s comfort as they come to terms with his demise.
“To my brother President Cyril Ramaphosa, the People of the Republic of South Africa and the family, friends and relatives of Archbishop Tutu, I pray to God to cover you all with his calming fortitude during this difficult period of mourning,” President Kenyatta condoled.
Born in 1931, Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu was a long-serving Anglican Church cleric and anti-apartheid campaigner who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984 and was later appointed to chair his country’s post-apartheid Truth and Reconciliation Commission.