14 Jul 2018 16:50pm
WINDHOEK, 14 JUL (NAMPA) - Former Prime Minister and Speaker of the National Assembly, Theo-Ben Gurirab, has died.
He was 80.
Gurirab died in the Mediclinic private hospital in Windhoek around 12h00 on Saturday after a short illness.
His death was confirmed by family member Tsudao Gurirab, who said the former Speaker was admitted to the hospital three days ago.
Former President Sam Nujoma and former Prime Minister Nahas Angula were among those paying their respects at the Gurirab residence in Windhoek on Saturday.
Gurirab served as Swapo’s Secretary for Foreign Affairs from 1986 to 1990 and played a major role in the country’s liberation struggle.
He was Minister of Foreign Affairs from Namibia’s independence in 1990 until 2002, when he started serving as Prime Minister.
Gurirab served in this position until 2005 and was then Speaker of the National Assembly until 2015.
He also served as Swapo's Chief Representative to the United Nations for 14 years.
The seasoned diplomat held the title of Dean of African Foreign Ministers and in over 35 years in the field of international diplomacy, he worked with three generations of world leaders and five Secretaries-General of the United Nations.
Among his major achievements as foreign minister, Gurirab led three years of negotiations that led to Walvis Bay’s reintegration into Namibia in 1994.
He is survived by his wife, Joan Guriras and two sons.