A few white plastic chairs in front of his house and umbrellas to shield the midday heat, neighbours in Soweto, South Africa’s bustling township where Desmond Tutu lived during apartheid, on Wednesday paid tribute to the fearless cleric.
Tutu died in Cape Town on Sunday aged 90.
“He used to tell me ‘go to school, you must fight for your rights knowing exactly what you are fighting for’,” recalls Linda Malinda, now 63.
She still resides in the same house she stayed in with her parents back then, in the 1970s, just a few meters from the anti-apartheid icon’s house in the township, a crucible of the struggle against a brutal minority regime.
In 1985, the world’s most famous clergyman was ordained as the first black Anglican bishop of Johannesburg.
Twenty years earlier, the school teacher walked out of the classroom to protest against the deteriorating standards of education for blacks and the introduction of racial segregation in schooling.
“They made sure to teach them just enough English for them to understand the orders they will be given,” Tutu said in 1995