Imagine voting for the first time at 62-years old. Imagine living in a country where by law, you were considered “less than”. Imagine having to contend with squalid living conditions, ill-stocked hospitals, discriminatory policies and poor quality education. Imagine living a life where police brutality was all you knew.
For this man, Desmond Mpilo Tutu, those are not things he had to imagine. Like millions of native South Africans, that’s a reality he lived. Even with a Noble Peace Prize, apartheid laws required that he seek permission to occupy the official residence of the Archbishop.
No Future Without Forgiveness is a personal recollection of the dark times of apartheid in South Africa. Desmond Tutu, then the Archbishop of Cape Town, played a pivotal role, in steering his country forward.
He writes of his experience through the Sharpeville massacre and Soweto uprising. He examines in details some of the atrocities that have pockmarked South Africa’s history.
Principally, he writes of his experience as the chairperson of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. He was appointed by President Mandela and charged with leading the commission that would facilitate the painful but necessary process of healing. He writes of the unenviable task of sitting through harrowing tales of horrendous atrocities committed against his people.
No Future Without Forgiveness is touching account of the tedious work of nation building. Desmond Tutu writes of his wins and losses. With the benefit of hindsight, he gifts the reader with invaluable lessons. Lessons on leadership, democracy, justice and above all, humanity.
Desmond Tutu will go down in history was an advocate of peace, par excellence. His contribution to reconciliation shall live beyond South Africa. Indeed, he was been a mediator to many warring countries across the globe.