Africa mourns passing of Namibia’s Hage Geingob

By Xinhua
On 5 February 2024 at 07:13

Tributes flooded in from African countries after former Namibian President Hage Geingob passed away earlier Sunday.

In his message of condolences, Botswanan President Mokgweetsi Masisi described Geingob as a true friend of Botswana.

"We deeply value his support in building an extraordinary partnership our two countries and people enjoy today. We honor his legacy, mourn his passing, and remain committed to our steadfast friendship and cooperation," said Masisi.

Masisi has directed that flags of Botswana fly at half-mast throughout the country from Sunday until Geingob is laid to rest.

Mourning Geingob’s death, Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa said the Southern African Development Community (SADC) has lost a liberation stalwart and icon.

"We deeply cherish the exemplary role that he played in consolidating the excellent relations that exist between Zimbabwe and Namibia, as well as in advancing the integration agenda of our regional body, SADC, and the cause of the African peoples and continent," Mnangagwa said.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa expressed his sadness over the passing of Geingob, saying, "Today, South Africa joins the people of our sister state, Namibia, in mourning the passing of a leader, patriot, and friend of South Africa."

Ramaphosa said Geingob was a towering veteran of Namibia’s liberation from colonialism and apartheid. "He was also greatly influential in the solidarity that the people of Namibia extended to the people of South Africa so that we could be free today."

"This loss is not only deeply felt by Namibians but also reverberates throughout the entire SADC region and the African continent. We mourn the passing of an outstanding revolutionary and dedicated statesman who led with wisdom, integrity, diplomacy, and a deep passion for his people," the Parliament of South Africa said in a statement.

Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema also extended his deep condolences, describing Geingob as a true friend, liberation icon, senior African statesman, and elder brother.

Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan expressed her condolences via X, formerly known as Twitter.

"I am deeply saddened to learn of the passing of the president of Namibia, His Excellency Hage Geingob, a dear brother, a venerable pan-Africanist, and a great friend of Tanzania," she said.

Nangolo Mbumba, the former vice president of Namibia, took the oath of office on Sunday in the Namibian capital of Windhoek, officially becoming the country’s fourth president after Geingob passed away at the age of 82.

On Jan. 19, the Namibian presidency said Geingob’s medical team discovered cancerous cells following a biopsy examination.