"“We see before us a land, bereft of much justice, and therefore without peace and security. Unrest is endemic and will remain an unchanging feature of the South African scene until apartheid, the root cause of it all, is finally dismantled.”
African Human Rights Coalition mourns the death of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, fondly called Arch by South Africans, one of the world’s most revered religious figures, a peace-warrior, human rights defender, and equality preacher.
A revolutionary in peace, a leading religious and moral voice for justice and equality, Tata Arch Tutu passed away on December 26 at the age of 90. It is with deep sadness that I extend condolences, from my family and from African Human Rights Coalition to Madam Leah and the children, spouses and all extended family, friends, the people of South Africa, and the Nobel Peace Prize laureate family.
So full of life with his pointed sense of humor, Archbishop Tutu will be sorely missed for all he has been and he will remain forever remembered as a dedicated and voracious human rights defender, and giant in humanitarian service.
His work and influence took extraordinary courage and contributed significantly to the ending of Apartheid. He was an important voice for LGBTQI+ acceptance and rights.
In more recent years Archbishop Tutu became known for his strong advocacy for the rights for LGBTQI+ people. In 2013, he made global headlines with the clear and succinct statement, in typical Tutu fashion, that he would rather "go to hell than to a homophobic heaven".
Given that over 30 out of 54 countries on the Continent of Africa still criminalize SOGIESC, giving license to persecution and violence, with those countries using religion as justification, the voice of Arch Tutu remains of crucial importance. Let us carry his voice so that he is truly remembered for his grace and glory.
May South Africa’s Arch rest in peace and his memory be a blessing. Hamba Kahle, Tata Arch.
By Melanie Nathan Executive Director African Human Rights Coalition December 26, 2021
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