Tutu rallies behind murder accused right-to-die activist Davison
The retired Anglican Archbishop has made it clear that he would like to be allowed the option of a dignified assisted death.
Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Mpilo Tutu.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu has made it clear that he firmly supports right-to-die activist Sean Davison’s beliefs.
Davison, founder of the right-to-die organisation Dignity SA, is facing a murder charge relating to the death of a man in 2013.
The 57-year-old activist is accused of assisting in the suicide of his friend Anrich Burger, who was left quadriplegic after an accident.
Davidson is out on bail after appearing on a murder charge in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.
The archbishop, according to a TimesLive report, has called on lawmakers to consider the rights of terminally ill patients who wanted dignity in death.
“This should include affording people who have reached the end stages of life the right to choose how and when to leave Mother Earth.”
Davison appeared in court, was charged with premeditated murder and released on bail of R20,000.
Davison first made headlines for assisting with the assisted suicide of his mother in New Zealand when she was suffering from cancer.
In December 2016, South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal overturned a ruling that granted a man the right to medically assisted death which could have opened the way to legalise euthanasia.
The government appealed against the initial judgment, saying it could lead to assisted-suicide legislation that would be open to abuse.
Medically assisted suicide or voluntary euthanasia is illegal in South Africa, but in recent years there have been growing calls for it to be legalised.
Tutu, 86, has previously said he would like to be allowed the option of a dignified assisted death.