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On the 16th of June 1976, Soweto students began a wide scale rebellion against being forced to accept Afrikaans as the language of instruction and the inferior education they were forced to endure. At the time, Tutu was the Vicar General when he received news of the police shooting and killing students


Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Mpilo Tutu, a Nobel Peace Laureate, is one ofthe greatest living moral icons of our time who was a key role player in the fight against apartheid in South Africa. He was also the first black South AfricanArchbishop of Cape Town, South Africa and primate of the Anglican Church ofSouth Africa.

Archbishop Tutu became heavily embroiled in controversy as he spoke out against the injustices of the apartheid system. He became a prominent leader in the crusade for justice and racial conciliation in South Africa. In 1984 he received a Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of his extraordinary contributions to that cause. In 1986 Bishop Tutu was elevated to Archbishop of Cape Town, and in this capacity he did much to bridge the chasm between black and white Anglicans in South Africa. And as Archbishop, Tutu became a principal mediator and conciliator in the transition to democracy in South Africa.
In 1995 President Nelson Mandela appointed the Archbishop Chairman of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, a body set up to probe gross human rights violations that occurred under apartheid. In recent years Tutu has turned his attention to a different cause: the campaign against HIV/AIDS. The Archbishop has made appearances around the globe to help raise awareness of the disease and its tragic consequences in human lives and suffering.
Though his vigorous advocacy of social justice once rendered him a controversial figure, today Archbishop Tutu is regarded as an elder world statesman with a major role to play in reconciliation, and as a leading moral voice. He has become an icon of hope far beyond the Church and Southern Africa.

1931 -1954

Desmond Mpilo Tutu (fondly known as the “Arch”) was born on October 7, 1931 in Klerksdorp a small town in the North West Province, to Zachariah Zelilo Tutu (known as ZZ), and his wife Aletta Mathlare (known as Matse). ZZ and Matse were blessed with 4 children Sylvia Funeka, Desmond Mpilo, Gloria Lindiwe and a young one who died as an infant. ZZ who was educated at a Mission School, worked as a headmaster of a black primary school in Ventersdorp where Desmond Tutu also began school, while Matse worked as a domestic worker and later a cooker. He was eight years old when his father was transferred to a school that catered for African, Indian and Coloured children in Ventersdorp. He was also a pupil at this school, growing up in an environment where there were children from other cultures.

Tutu was baptised as a Methodist but it was in Ventersdorp that the family followed his sister, Sylvia’s lead into the African Methodical Episcopal Church and finally in 1943 the entire family became Anglicans. At the age of twelve his family moved to Johannesburg. In 1945, he began his secondary school at Western High, a Government secondary school in the old Western Native Township, near Sophiatown. Around that time he was hospitalised for over a year with tuberculosis. It was here that Father Trevor Huddleston befriended him. Father Huddleston brought him books to read and a deep friendship developed between the two. Later, Tutu became a server at Father Huddleston’s parish church in Munsieville. Although he had fallen behind at school owing to his illness, his principal took pity on him and allowed him to join the Matriculation class.

In 1948 the National Party won the election and this was the beginning where South African population were classified by race under the apartheid regime. At this period time the Group Areas Act had passed to separate whites and non-whites. At the end of 1950, he passed the Joint Matriculation Board examination, studying into the night by candlelight. Tutu was accepted to study at the Witwatersrand Medical School but was unable to obtain a bursary. He decided to follow his father’s example and become a teacher. In 1951, he enrolled at the Bantu Normal College, outside Pretoria, to study for a teacher’s diploma. In 1954, Tutu completed a teaching diploma from the Bantu Normal College and taught at his old school, Madipane High in Krugersdorp. In 1954 the Bantu Education Act was in effect, it was aimed at training black children for manual labour and menial jobs that the government saw suitable. It explicitly intended to indoctrinate the idea that black people were to accept being subservient to white South Africans.

In 1955, he obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of South Africa (UNISA). One of the people that helped him with his University studies was Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe, the first president of the Pan Africanist Congress (PAC).In same period wedding negotiations began late December between Desmond Mpilo Tutu and Nomalizo Leah Shenxane who had just completed her teachers training course. Due to the promoted inequality in education Desmond Tutu refused to be part of the corrupted educational system and after three years of teaching, Tutu quit in protest at the deteriorating of Black education that resulted from the implementation of the Bantu Education Act of 1953


On the 2nd of July 1955, Archbishop Tutu married Nomalizo Leah Shenxane, one of his father’s brightest pupils. After their marriage, Tutu began teaching at Munsieville High School, where his father was still the headmaster. He is remembered as an inspiring teacher. But after three years of teaching, Tutu quit in protest at the deteriorating of Black education that resulted from the implementation of the Bantu Education Act of 1953.

During his stay in Munsieville, Tutu thought hard about joining the priesthood. He offered himself to the Bishop of Johannesburg to become a priest. By 1955 he had been admitted as a sub-deacon at Krugersdorp. In 1958, he enrolled at St Peter’s Theological College in Rosettenville. Here Tutu proved to be a student excelling at his studies. He was awarded licentiate of Theology with two distinctions. He was ordained as a deacon in December 1960 at St Mary’s Cathedral, Johannesburg and he took up his first curacy at St Albans Church in Benoni location.

By now, Tutu and Leah had two children, Trevor Thamsanqa and Theresa Thandeka. Nontombi Naomi was born in 1960. At the end of 1961 Tutu was ordained as a priest, following which he was transferred to a new church in Thokoza. Rev Desmond Tutu left South Africa to further his theological studies in Britain London. He was given a bursary to study at King’s College London and was awarded a scholarship by the World Council of Churches (WCC). In 14 September 1962 he arrived at King’s college at the University of London to further his theological studies. Their fourth child, Mpho, was born in London in 1963. London was an exhilarating experience for the Tutu family after the suffocating life under apartheid. He completed his Honours and Master’s Degree in London and graduated in 1966. Tutu then returned to South Africa and taught at the Federal Theological Seminary at Alice in the Eastern Cape. Apart from being a lecturer at the Seminary, he was also appointed as the Anglican Chaplain to the University of Fort Hare.

At Alice he began working on his Doctorate, although he did not complete it. At the same time he began making his views against apartheid known. He was earmarked to become the future Principal of the Seminary and was, in 1970, due to become the Vice-Principal. However, with mixed feelings he accepted an invitation to become a lecturer at the University of Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland based at Roma in Lesotho. Just two years later he was appointed as the Associate Director for Africa of the Theological Education Fund in London, started in 1960 to improve theological education in the developing world. The Tutu family relocated in January 1972 where they set up home in South East London. In 1972 Rev Tutu moved with his family to London and became an associate director of the Theological Education Fund of the World Council of Churches.

In 1974 Leslie Stradling, the Bishop of Johannesburg, retired and the search for his successor began. However, Timothy Bavin, who had consistently voted for Rev Desmond Mpilo Tutu during the elective process, was elected Bishop. Bishop Leslie Stradling then invited the Rev Desmond Mpilo Tutu to become his Dean. Tutu returned to South Africa in 1975 to take up a post as the first Black Anglican Dean of Johannesburg and the Rector of St Mary’s Cathedral Parish in Johannesburg. Here he brought about radical changes, often to the chagrin of some his White parishioners.

1976 - 1985

On the 16th of June 1976, Soweto students began a wide scale rebellion against being forced to accept Afrikaans as the language of instruction and the inferior education they were forced to endure. At the time, Tutu was the Vicar General when he received news of the police shooting and killing students. He spent the day engaged with students and parents. Tutu played a significant role in the Soweto Parents Crisis Committee which was set up in the aftermath of the killings. Following this, Tutu was persuaded to accept the position of Bishop of Lesotho. After much consultation with family and church colleagues he accepted and was consecrated as Bishop on the 11th of July 1976. In 1977 Black Consciousness leader Steve Biko dies while in the custody of Security Police. During the funeral Bishop Desmond Tutu, Mrs. Leah Tutu and 71 year old Reverend William Moalusi were amongst those who were beaten by police with sjambok.

By 1978, in the wake of the 1976 Soweto uprising, South Africa was in turmoil, and Tutu was persuaded to take up the post of General Secretary of the South African Council of Churches (SACC). It was in this position that he became both a national and international figure. Justice and reconciliation and an end to apartheid were the SACC’s priorities, and as General Secretary, Tutu pursued these goals with vigour and commitment. Under his guidance, the SACC became an important institution in South African spiritual and political life, challenging white society and the government and affording assistance to the victims of apartheid. In 1980 Bishop Desmond Tutu led a delegation of church leaders and the SACC to speak to Prime Minister PW Botha and his cabinet delegation. It was a historical moment as it was the first time any Black leader, outside the system, talked with a White Government leader. Nothing transpired out of that meeting. During an overseas trips, Bishop Desmond Tutu spoke out harshly against Apartheid, as a result the Government withdraw his passport. The act prevented him from travelling abroad to accept Honorary Doctorate from University of Ruhr, West Germany. He was later arrested with other clergymen while protesting the arrest of Congregationalist minister John Thorne and they were held in jail overnight. The Prime Minister accused the SACC of receiving millions of rands from overseas to foment unrest. Bishop Desmond Tutu challenged him to charge the SACC in an open court, the Government appointed the Eloff Commission of Enquiry to investigate the SACC. They found no evidence of the SACC being manipulated from overseas.

Inevitably, Tutu became heavily embroiled in controversy as he spoke out against the injustices of the apartheid system. For several years he was denied a passport to travel abroad as the South African Government continued to persecute him. In September 1982, after eighteen months without a passport, he was issued with a limited ‘travel document’ which allowed him and his wife to travel to America. There he was able to educate Americans about Nelson Mandela and Oliver Tambo, whom most Americans were ignorant of. In 1983 he was elected Patron of the United Democratic Front (UDF), one of the most important non-racial anti-apartheid organisations. His community activism was complemented by that of his wife Leah. She championed the cause for better working conditions for domestic workers in South Africa. She helped found the South African Domestic Workers Association.

In 1984, whilst in America, Tutu learnt that he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize award for his untiring effort in calling for an end to White minority rule in South Africa. 10th of December 1984 Bishop Desmond Tutu was awarded with the Nobel Peace Prize. While several Black South Africans celebrated this prestigious award, the Government was silent, not even congratulating Tutu on his achievement. He became second black South African to be listed under Nobel Laureates after Albert Luthuli. In 9184, Bishop Tutu learnt that he was being nominated to become the Bishop of Johannesburg. He urged foreign disinvestment in South Africa as a way to pressurise the government to dismantle apartheid, and was the focus of harassment by the security police as a result. Like murdered activist Steve Biko, he also urged civil disobedience. In 1985 he was installed as the first black Anglican Bishop of Johannesburg. At the same time his detractors, mainly Whites (and a few Blacks e.g. Lennox Sebe, leader of the Ciskei) were not happy with his election.
In 1985, the Government imposed a State of Emergency in 36 magisterial districts. Severe restrictions were placed on ‘political’ funerals. Bishop Tutu called on the Minister of Police to reconsider these regulations and stated that he would defy them.

The following are the few accolades he collected in this period:
24 May 1978-Doctor of Divinity-General Theological Seminary- New York
1 January 1979- Doctor of Laws-Harvard University- Massachusetts
1 January 1984- Doctor of Divinity-Aberdeen University-Scotland
1980-Biko Soweto Medal-South Africa
1983-Citta de Vaticano silver medal-Italy
19 May 1984-Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award-USA
10 December 1984-Nobel Peace Prize-Norway
1 January 1985-Newsmaker of the year-South Africa

It is by standing up for girls and women that we truly measure up as men.

1986 - 1996

In February 1986 Alexandra Township Johannesburg went up in flames. Tutu together with Reverend Beyers Naude, Dr Boesak and other church leaders went to Alexandra Township and helped to defuse the situation there. He then travelled to Cape Town to see Botha, but again he was snubbed. Instead, he met Adriaan Vlok, the Deputy Minister of Law, Order and Defence. After 18 months as Bishop of Johannesburg he was elected as the Archbishop of Cape Town. 7 September 1986, Bishop Tutu was installed as the Archbishop of Cape Town, becoming the first Black person to lead the Anglican Church of the Province of Southern Africa. Again, there was great jubilation at him being chosen as the Archbishop, but detractors were critical. At the Goodwood Stadium over 10,000 people gathered in his honour for the Eucharist. The exiled ANC President Oliver Tambo and 45 Heads of State sent their congratulations to him. While occupying Bishopscourt, he was also the president of the All Africa Conference of Churches in 1987. In 1988 he was installed as a Chancellor of the University of the Western Cape. In the same period, he was arrested with other clergymen during procession from St. George’s Cathedral in Cape Town to Parliament building. The South African Council of Churches (SACC) headquarters, Khotso House in Johannesburg, is destroyed by a bomb and 19 people are injured. 1989: September 13, along with Dr. Allan Boesak, leads protest march of 30,000 people in Cape Town.

Following his appointment in 1989 as State President, FW De Klerk on the 2nd of February 1990 unbanned the ANC and other political parties, and announced plans to release Nelson Mandela from prison, which took place on the 11th of February. The process was not without violence: 19th April 1993, Chris Hani, leader of the South African Communist Party, was murdered by right-wingers. At Hani’s emotionally charged funeral, the “Arch” urged the crowd of around 120 000 to work peacefully together and end apartheid. He called on the mourners to chant with him: “We will be Free!”, “All of us!”, “Black and White together!” He told the throng: “We are the rainbow people of God! We are unstoppable! Nobody can stop us on our march to victory! No one, no guns, nothing! Nothing will stop us, for we are moving to freedom! We are moving to freedom and nobody can stop us! For God is on our side!”

Nelson Mandela subsequently went on to become South Africa’s first democratically elected president on the 27th of April 1994. The Arch voted for the first time to witness the fall of Apartheid regime and the birth of democratic South Africa where every citizens will be treated equally. Following the elections in 1994, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) was set up to bear witness to, record and in some cases, grant amnesty to perpetrators of crimes relating to human right violations. President Mandela asked the “Arch” to chair the TRC, with Dr Alex Boraine as deputy chairman. Public hearings of the Human Rights Violations Committee and the Amnesty Committee were held at a number of venues around South Africa. The hearings were often harrowing and emotional, conveying the toll that apartheid tool on all sides of the liberation struggle. As a result the first TRC hearing/meeting took place in East London Orient Theatre.

He retired from the Church in 1996 to focus solely on the TRC, and was later named Archbishop Emeritus. On his last oration as the Archbishop of the Province of Southern Africa he was awarded with The Order for Meritorious Service (Gold) in 1996 for his outstanding service to the country. When bestowing the award President Mandela said “He is renowned for selfless commitment to the poor, the oppressed and downtrodden. With his colleagues he remained an effective voice of the people of South Africa when so many of their leaders were imprisoned, exiled, banned and restricted”. He was also acknowledged by the Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Carey with the Archbishop of Canterbury Award for outstanding service to the Anglican Communion. Grand Merit Cross (Großes Verdienstkreuz) 2nd Class or with Star and Sash (Großes Verdienstkreuz mit Stern und Schulterband) bestowed on Tutu by the Federal Republic of Germany on 16 September 1996. Handed to Archbishop Tutu in Cape Town on 06 November 1996 by ‘then’ German president Professor Roman Herzog to mention the few.

The following are the few accolades he collected in this period:
10 May 1986-Doctor of Humane Letters-North Carolina University-USA
1987-Citta de Vaticano Silver Medal-Italy
23 May 1987-Doctor of Laws-University of West Indies-West Indies
30-Septmber 1988-Honoris Causa-University Robert Schuman-France
25 February 1989-Honorary Citizen-Republic of Zaire
10 December 1990-Visitante Distinguido-Honduras
15 August 1993- Doctor of Humane Letters-Morehouse school of Medicine-USA
1996-Order of Meritorious Service Gold-South Africa
1996-Order of Merit-Germany

1997 - 2006

In 1997 he named Archbishop Emeritus Tutu. The “Arch” was diagnosed with prostate cancer and underwent successful treatment in America. Despite this ailment, he continued to work with the commission. . He subsequently became patron of the South African Prostate Cancer Foundation, which was established in 2007. On October 28, 1998 the Commission presented its report, which condemned both sides for their atrocities. The TRC has become a model for a number of similar post-conflict procedures around the world. In 1998 the Desmond Tutu Peace Centre (DTPC) was co-founded by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Mrs. Leah Tutu. The Centre plays a unique role in building and leveraging the legacy of Archbishop Tutu to enable peace in the world. Since apartheid’s fall, the Arch Emeritus Tutu has campaigned for gay rights and spoken out on a wide range of subjects, among them the Israel-Palestine conflict, his opposition to the Iraq War.

He divided his time between homes in Soweto’s Orlando West and Milnerton. In 2000, he opened an office in Cape Town. In June 2000, the Cape Town-based Desmond Tutu Peace Centre was launched, which in 2003 launched an Emerging Leadership Program. Conscious that his presence in South Africa might overshadow Ndungane, the “Arch” agreed to a two-year visiting professorship at Emory University. This took place between 1998 and 2000, and during the period he wrote a book about the TRC, No Future Without Forgiveness.

The “Arch” continues to speak out on moral and political issues affecting South Africa and other countries. He has criticised the government and the ruling party when he felt that it had fallen short of the democratic ideals which many people fought for. He has repeatedly appealed for peace in Zimbabwe and compared the actions of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe’s government to those of the South African apartheid regime. He is also a supporter of the Palestinian cause, and the people of East Timor. He is an outspoken critic of the mistreatment of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay and has spoken out against human rights abuses in Burma, calling for the release of Aung San Suu Kyi, the house-arrested leader of Burma’s opposition and fellow Nobel Peace Prize winner. Though his vigorous advocacy of social justice once rendered him a controversial figure, today Archbishop Tutu is regarded as an elder world statesman with a major role to play in reconciliation, and as a leading moral voice.
The “Arch” also spoke out on the need to combat the HIV/AIDS pandemic. On the April 2005 election of Pope Benedict XVI—who was known for his conservative views on issues of gender and sexuality—Tutu described it as unfortunate that the Roman Catholic Church was now unlikely to change its opposition to the use of condoms nor its opposition to the ordination of women priests. To help combat child trafficking, in 2006 the “Arch” launched a global campaign, organised by the aid organisation Plan, to ensure that all children are registered at birth.

Tutu retained his interest in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and after the signing of the Oslo Accords was invited to Tel Aviv to attend the Peres Centre for Peace. He became increasingly frustrated following the collapse of the 2000 Camp David Summit, and in 2002 gave a widely publicised speech denouncing Israeli policy regarding the Palestinians and calling for sanctions against Israel. The “Arch” was named to head a United Nations fact-finding mission to Beit Hanoun in the Gaza Strip to investigate the November 2006 incident in which soldiers from the Israel Defence Forces killed 19 civilians. Israeli officials expressed concern that the report would be biased against Israel. The “Arch” cancelled the trip in mid-December, saying that Israel had refused to grant him the necessary travel clearance after more than a week of discussions.

The following are the few accolades he collected in this period:
6 November 1997-Journalof Theology for South Africa-South Africa
23 December 1999-Ringng of closing bell-New York Stalk Exchange-USA
15 June 2000-Doctor of Laws- Law Society of Upper Canada-Toronto-Canada
10 February 2005-Bronze Medallion-Pontifica Universidad ad Javeriana Cali-Colombia
6 November 2006-Guild of Church Musicians-UK
9 March 2006-Honorary Doctrate-Central University of Technology-Free State

2007 - Up-to-date

In 2007, “the Arch” joined former President Nelson Mandela; former U.S. President Jimmy Carter; retired U.N Secretary General Kofi Annan; and former Irish President Mary Robinson to form The Elders, a private initiative mobilizing the experience of senior world leaders outside of the conventional diplomatic process. He was selected to chair the group. Subsequent to this, Carter and Tutu travelled together to Darfur, Gaza and Cyprus in an effort to resolve long-standing conflicts. His historic accomplishments and his continuing efforts to promote peace in the world were formally recognized by the United States in 2009, when President Barack Obama named him to receive the nation’s highest civilian honour, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

The “Arch” officially retired from public life on 7 October 2010. However, he continues with his involvement with the Elders and Nobel Laureate Group and his support of the Desmond Tutu Peace Centre. He did, however, step down from his positions as Chancellor of the University of the Western Cape and as a representative on the UN’s advisory committee on the prevention of genocide. In the week leading to his 80th birthday, Tutu was cast into the spotlight. Tibet’s spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, who went into exile in 1959 after leading an uprising against Chinese rule, was invited by Tutu to deliver the inaugural Desmond Tutu International Peace lecture during the three-day celebration of Tutu’s 80th birthday in Cape Town. The South African Government procrastinated while deciding whether to issue the Dalai Lama with a visa, probably cognisant that by so doing they risked upsetting their allies in China.

By 4 October 2011, the Dalai Lama has still not been granted a visa and he therefore cancelled his trip, saying that he was not going to come to South Africa after all, as the South African government found it ‘inconvenient’ and he did not want to place any individual or the Government in an untenable position. The Government caught on its back foot tried to defend its tardiness. South Africans from across the socio-political spectrum, religious leaders, academics and civil society, united in condemning the Government’s actions. In a rare show of fury the “Arch” launched a blistering attack on the ANC and President Jacob Zuma, venting his anger at the Government’s position regarding the Dalai Lama. The Dalai Lama had been previously refused a visa to visit South Africa in 2009.Tutu and the Dalai Lama did go on to write a book together nonetheless.

In May 2013, the Arch declared that he would no longer vote for the ANC, stating that while the party was “very good at leading us in the struggle to be free from oppression”, it had done a poor job in countering inequality, violence, and corruption in South Africa. After Mandela died in December 2013, Tutu initially stated that he had not been invited to the funeral, but the government denied this and he subsequently announced that he would attend. He publicly criticised the memorials held for Mandela, stating that they had given too much prominence to the ANC and that Afrikaners had been marginalised from them, believing that Mandela himself would have been appalled by this. The Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation was established in 2013 and based in Cape Town.

However, notwithstanding his frail health, the “Arch” continues to be highly revered for his knowledge, views and experience, especially in reconciliation. In 2015, to celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary, the “Arch” and Leah renewed their vows. He continues to criticise the South African government over corruption scandals and what he says is the loss of their moral compass. The “Arch” has never stopped publicly speaking out against what he considers immoral behaviour, whether in China, Europe, or the United States. It was the “Arch” who coined the popular phrase, the ‘Rainbow Nation’ to describe the beauty in difference to be found among all the different people in South Africa. Even though the term’s popularity has waned over the years, the ideal of a united harmonious South African nation is still one that is yearned for.

He has become an icon of hope far beyond the Church and Southern Africa. The “Arch” was the chairman of the Elders, an independent group of influential people chosen for their outstanding integrity, courage and proven ability to tackle some of the world’s toughest problems. The Elders because of their varied backgrounds use their collective skills to catalyse peaceful resolutions to conflict areas and address global issues that cause immense human suffering. Tutu officially retired from public life on the 7th of October 2010.

However, he continues with his involvement with the Elders and his support of the Desmond Tutu Peace Centre
The Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Mpilo Tutu has held several distinguished academic and world leadership posts. He was elected Fellow of Kings College; President of the All Africa Conference of Churches, London; Chancellor of the University of the Western Cape, the William R. Cannon Professor of Theology at the Candler School of Theology, Emory University, Atlanta; Visiting Professor at the Episcopal Divinity School, Cambridge, Massachusetts; Visiting Scholar in Residence at the University of North Florida, Jacksonville; and Visiting Professor of Post-Conflict Studies at Kings College. Archbishop Tutu holds honorary degrees from over one hundred and thirty universities, including Harvard, Oxford, Cambridge, Columbia, Yale, Emory, the Ruhr, Kent, Aberdeen, Sydney, Fribourg (Switzerland), Cape Town, Witwatersrand, and the University of South Africa.

He has received many prizes and awards in addition to the Nobel Peace Prize, most notably the Order for Meritorious Service Award (Gold) presented by President Mandela; the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Award for Outstanding Service to the Anglican Communion; the Prix d’Athene (Onassis Foundation); the Family of Man Gold Medal Award; the Mexican Order of the Aztec Medal (Insignia Grade); the Martin Luther King Jr. Non-Violent Peace Prize; the Sydney Peace Prize and the Gandhi Peace Prize; the J. William Fulbright Prize for International Understanding in 2008 and recently, the 2009 Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honour awarded to individuals who have made significant contributions in various spheres of life.
The following are the few accolades he collected in this period:

16 June 2007-Gradus Doctoris Legum-Vrije Universiteit-Netherlands
2008-Medal inscribed with “St Lazarus Chapel”-St Lazarus Chapel-South Africa
8 December 2009-Presidential Medal of Freedom-USA
10 November 2010-Indema-Thema Award-Inyathelo Philanthropy Awards-RSA
10 January 2011-Fifa Ballon d’Or-Zurich
13 May 2012-Doctor of Laws-Gonzaga University-USA
1 June 2014-Secred Military Constatinian Order of Saint George-Carlo Di Borbone Delle Due Sille-Italy
31 October 2018-Recognition of Service-The Sunflower Fund-USA

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