Statement issued by the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation – 4 July 2013

CAPE TOWN: 4 July 2013 – Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu has appealed to members of the Mandela family to dig deep within themselves to find the grace that their patriarch and the nation deserves at this sombre moment.

“Please, please, please may we think not only of ourselves. It’s almost like spitting in Madiba’s face,” Archbishop Tutu said.

“We cannot imagine how difficult it must be for a family to endure being physically separated from its father for the 27 years that Mr Mandela spent in prison, only to have to share him with the world when freedom came.

“Your anguish, now, is the nation’s anguish – and the world’s. We want to embrace you, to support you, to shine our love for Madiba through you. Please may we not besmirch his name.”

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This statement was issued for the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation by Oryx Media.