Tutu takes flak from ANCYL over vote talk

Johannesburg - Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu should stand for the truth as he is a man of the cloth, the African National Congress Youth League said on Monday.

"The archbishop... should stand for truth and not sensationalism," it said in a statement.

The league was reacting to Tutu's comments about next year's elections that were carried in an opinion piece in a newspaper last week.

"[We have] noted with concern comments made by [him] with regards to his voting in next year’s general elections, and specifically that he would not vote for the ANC," the league said.

It noted that Tutu was a person of influence, saying his opinions should be exemplary.

"Young people, who constitute a large voting bloc in the country, expect the archbishop and other leaders to speak truth anchored by reality, and facts, and not anecdotal information based on creativity and imagination."

The struggle veteran was quoted as saying he would not vote for the ruling party again.

"They were a good freedom-fighting unit, but it doesn't seem to me now that a freedom-fighting unit can easily make the transition to becoming a political party," Tutu said.

The youth league defended its mother body, saying the ANC was still well placed to lead the country.

"While there are challenges in South Africa, with corruption ranking high amongst them, the ANC remains the best placed organisation to take forward our socio-economic transformation project started in 1994."

The league urged Tutu to "restrain himself from unscientific and anecdotal commentary" that was "designed to confuse and discourage the youth".

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