Dom Alexandre José Maria dos Santos, Mozambique’s first black priest and later its first cardinal, has died at the age of 103.
He was one of the most highly respected religious figures in the country and played a key role in talks that led to peace in 1992 ending the country’s 16-year civil war.
President Filipe Nyusi said the country had lost “one of its best sons who stood out in the world for his commitment to the good of humanity regardless of social status, race, or other forms of distinction”.
Roque Silva, the secretary general of the governing Frelimo party, described the cardinal’s death as a loss for the whole of society.
Born in the southern Mozambican province of Inhambane, Dom Alexandre was ordained as a priest in 1953.
He served as the archbishop of Maputo from 1975 to 2003 and was appointed a cardinal in 1988 by Pope John Paul II.