Tutu laments SA's 'time warp'

2014-12-12 17:36
Archbishop Desmond Tutu. (Jennifer Bruce, AFP)

Archbishop Desmond Tutu. (Jennifer Bruce, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - Nobel Peace Prize winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu on Friday made a scathing assessment of South Africa's fall from grace since the euphoria over the end of apartheid 20 years ago.

In a statement to mark the 30th anniversary of winning the Nobel prize for his courageous stand against white minority rule, 83-year-old Tutu condemned government corruption, violence and continuing racism.

"It's as if we're in a time warp, and have returned to the past," he said.

Tutu had been scheduled to attend a Nobel Peace Laureates' summit in Rome this week, but announced on Tuesday that he had cancelled all travel plans for the rest of the year to battle prostate cancer.

SA's moral conscience

Widely regarded as South Africa's moral conscience, Tutu urged the "resuscitating (of) the national spirit of magnanimity and common purpose" which marked the years of Nelson Mandela's presidency.

"The feeling of national euphoria that took hold in those early years of our democracy masked the necessity for us to follow through the work of healing a society battered and bruised by centuries of racial division and oppression," he said.

"While a handful of black businessmen and women have become very wealthy, mechanisms that promised to redistribute the wealth in our country have to a large extent failed - and the gap between rich and poor has widened."

Unemployment was high, land reform sluggish and the education system was struggling to deliver the knowledge and skills to lift the people out of poverty, he said.

"All these factors contribute to retarding the healing of the soul of the nation, and conspire to create the environment for the intolerable levels of violence and racism that bedevil our society today."


Tutu, at whose home Mandela spent his first night of freedom after 27 years in jail, has made no secret of his disillusionment over government corruption and poor administration under President Jacob Zuma.

Contrasting his apparent gloom about the South Africa of today, he looked back with obviously heartfelt nostalgia at the early days of democracy.

"Our relatively peaceful transition, from pariah state to a darling of the world, bordered on miraculous.

"We were the Rainbow People of God. For a period, it felt to many of us that we could achieve anything we set out to, that if we reached for the sky we would literally touch it."

Read more on:    jacob  |  desmond tutu  |  nelson  |  mandela  |  cape town  |  nobel peace prize

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.


Man scores date with tennis superstar after Twitter bet

It’s a modern day Cinderella story, but one American man took ‘shoot your shot’ seriously in 2017.


You won't want to miss...

6 myths about male cancer
Who are the highest paid models of 2017?
10 gorgeous plus-sized models who aren't Ashley Graham
5 top leg exercises for men
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.