Foreign policy should address domestic goals; Geingob

01 Aug 2017 17:30pm
WINDHOEK, 01 AUG (NAMPA) – It is crucial that Namibia’s foreign policy speaks to domestic goals and helps translate them into concrete actions that will help with the achievements of the country’s developmental goals.
These were the remarks of President Hage Geingob at the launch of the Dr Theo-Benjamin Gurirab Lecture Series at the Windhoek Country Club and Resort on Monday.
The lectures are being held around the country to engage the public on the development of Namibia’s foreign policy named after Theo-Ben Gurirab who was the country's first minister of Foreign Affairs from 1990 to 2002.
Geingob said it is paramount that every nation positions itself in the global arena through defining and applying its foreign policy.
He said this positioning and interaction with other States is becoming more important as the ever changing diplomatic landscape involves not just States but also multilateral institutions, non-governmental organisations, the private sector and charismatic individuals playing an active role in international relations.
“The international dynamics that define our modern world have been greatly influenced by the emergence of what are referred to as middle-income nations, or emerging powers whose main goal both domestically and internationally has been to promote their development and increase their stature and presence.”
He stressed that the role of foreign policies in the promotion of a country’s development is a matter of primary importance for understanding its national trajectory, especially in the case of an emerging country like Namibia.
The past decade, he said, had posed many foreign policy challenges for a country that anchors its foreign policy in principles it shares with the United Nations (UN).
“During this decade we have seen economic boom and bust, increased social and economic inequality, challenges, human rights, terrible poverty, intractable wars in many parts of Africa and the Middle East, refugee problems, threats of terrorism, evolution of social media and the resulting change in the dynamics of democracy, challenges posed by climate change, isolationist policies of certain states, threats to global trade and other international agreements.”
These, Geingob said, are challenges impacting upon the country’s interest and principles.
The date and venue of the next lecture is to be announced.