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Tutus send condolences following death of Princess Irene Buthelezi

By: stagedoorscribbler - April 1, 2019

Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Sent condolences following death of Irene Buthelezi. Photograph Hattie Miles.

We were sad to hear that Irene Buthelezi, wife of Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, has died after a long illness.

Her death at the age of 89 last Monday was announced in a statement from the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) and among those sending messages of condolence was the Desmond and Leah Tutu Foundation.

There had been tension between Tutu and Mangosuthu Buthlezi  in the past but when the Archbishop asked him to meet President Mandela he had immediately agreed. 

The Buthelezi family thanked friends and supporters for their thoughts and prayers and asked for privacy as Mangosuthu Buthelezi grieved for the woman he had been married to for 67 years.

At Princess Irene’s funeral on Friday the 90-years-old IFP leader asked: “How do I say farewell to the love of my life? No man could have asked for a better wife …”

Their son Prince Ntuthukoyezwe Zuzifa said: “I think to have known somebody for that long, they become part of your DNA so it’s very difficult for our father, especially because both of them as parents have lost five siblings, one after the other.”