The ANC in the Western Cape paid their respects to the family of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu on Monday afternoon.
Provincial delegates, including convenor Lerumo Kalako, co-ordinator Ronalda Nalumango and MP Faiez Jacobs with National Executive Committee member and Minister of International Relations and Co-operation Naledi Pandor, visited Tutu’s Milnerton home.
“We are paying our respects to a life well-lived and continue to express our condolences to the family, community and people who shared a space with the archbishop,” said provincial ANC spokesperson Sifiso Mtsweni.
Describing Tutu as a moral and towering figure, Mtsweni said one of the many qualities which The Arch stood for was that he campaigned for a just society throughout his life … up until his last breath.
“He stood on the side of the people at all times. He fought for the rights of the oppressed. He fought for the rights of women, children and the rights of the LGBTQI+ community.
“He was a person who really mobilised the spiritual community to say ‘we can’t continuously behave as though all is well because the freedom of the oppressed is the freedom of the people in general. Therefore, apartheid is a crime declared against humanity.’
“He had strong ethical, moral and religious values which have made him the person that he is,” he said.
Mtsweni reflected on the Nobel laureate’s 2013 statement in which he publicly declared that should the governing party not shape up, he would no longer be voting for the ANC due to the inequality, violence and corruption in the country.
“As the ANC, we have been on the receiving end of the archbishop. On many occasions, he had spoken out on what he perceived to be a corrupt practice in government. He has been a very strong person and uncompromising in his views and principles. I think once you are a principled person and of particular stature, you must forever be beyond reproach and never be flexible when it comes to your principles,” Mtsweni said.