“I saw him last week.”He was all right, I mean he’s 92, man, you know. And he’s frail.”
Earlier this month, a report circulated on social network Twitter that the elder statesman had died.
It was condemned as malicious and insensitive by the African National Congress.
Afrikaans Sunday newspaper, Rapport, reported that although the rumours were false, reliable sources had confirmed that Mandela’s health had deteriorated.
In mid-January, a Nelson Mandela Foundation spokesperson said Mandela was well and on holiday with his wife Graca Machel.
At the TB event, held at the Andile Junior Secondary School, Tutu expressed appreciation for all the people involved in the Kick TB campaign, who, he said, came from “all the races”.
“I must say something for us who hosted this wonderful World Cup. We can boot, we can kick TB and kick it right out of the ground,” he said.
“We can kick poverty, we can kick HIV, we can kick corruption…”
The campaign’s national project manager Wena Moelich said it had reached 17 700 children across the country since it was launched in South Africa in March 2010.
The campaign, which uses handouts of soccer balls bearing slogans to put across its anti-TB message, had another 115 000 balls in stock.