16 Dec 2018 20:20pm
WINDHOEK, 16 DEC (NAMPA) President Hage Geingob has accorded the late freedom fighter and trade unionist Petrus Ilonga a State funeral.
A State funeral means Government arranges the burial and covers all funeral costs.
Geingob, in a statement from the Presidency issued Sunday declared the late Ilonga who died at the age of 71 on 11 December a national hero.
The late politician who was born at Etilyasa-Ongandjera in the Omusati Region, died on Tuesday evening after a long illness.
Ilonga will be laid to rest at Heroes Acre in Windhoek on 22 December 2018 following consultations with his wife, sister and family.
A period of national mourning during which all flags in Namibia will be flown at half-mast, will also be observed from 19 to 22 December 2018.
During this period of national grief, President Geingob applauds an outstanding Namibian, the late Comrade Petrus Nangolo Ilonga for his bravery, exceptional contributions to the liberation of Namibia, and steadfast service to the people of Namibia after independence in several capacities, including as trade unionist, Member of Parliament and deputy minister, the statement said.
Ilonga received military training in Tanzania and the Soviet Union in his early years before returning to Namibia to fight in the liberation struggle against the apartheid regime for Namibias independence.
The former combat fighter filled the position of secretary general of the Namibia Public Workers Union (Napwu) from 1988-2000.
After he left Napwu, then President Sam Nujoma appointed him Deputy Minister of Environment and Tourism.
Ilonga further served the country as Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Welfare; Agriculture, Water and Forestry as well as at the Ministry of Defence between 2000 and 2015.
He is survived by his wife, nine children and two siblings.