South Africans pay last respects at Desmond Tutu funeral

South Africans pay last respects at Desmond Tutu funeral

Thousands of South Africans have been paying their last respects at St George’s Cathedral in Cape Town where late Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s body has been lying in state. 

The funeral mass for South Africa Archbishop Desmond Tutu is taking place at a cathedral in Cape Town. The main eulogy will be delivered by South African President Cyril Ramaphosa at the official state funeral on Saturday, where only 100 people are in attendance due to  COVID-19 guidelines.

The Archbishop Tutu IP Trust and the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation had shared the late religious leaders wishes to include “no ostentatiousness or lavish spending” on the ceremony and that he be given “the cheapest available coffin”.

The only flowers in the cathedral should be a “bouquet of carnations from his family”, the trust firms added. 

The BBC had reported on Friday that Mr Tutu would be aquamated   – a process using water that is described as an environmentally friendly alternative to cremation. 

His ashes are to be interred behind the pulpit at St George’s Cathedral in Cape Town – the Anglican diocese he served as Archbishop for 35 years.

Mr Tutu had passed on Boxing Day. after a long-running battle with prostate cancer, which was first diagnosed in 1997.

World leaders such as South African president Cyril Ramaphosa, President Joe Biden, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Queen Elizabeth II, former American president Barack Obama and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison sent out condolence messages to the family of the deceased. 

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