Cuban professor meets with Nujoma

17 Dec 2013 21:10pm
OTAVI, 17 DEC (NAMPA) - Namibia would not have been liberated had it not been for the support the country received from Cuba, former President Sam Nujoma said on Tuesday.
“During the dark days of our liberation struggle we received political, material and moral support from the Cuban people and we appreciate that,” Nujoma said during a meeting with visiting Cuban professor Miriam Rodriguez at his farm in the Otavi area.
Rodriguez, 67, arrived in Namibia last week to meet her over 8 000 “children” – Namibians who grew up under her care in Cuba during Namibia’s liberation struggle.
She is in Namibia for a two-month visit on invitation by former Namibian students who were in exile in Cuba.
Some Namibian students stayed there for more than 20 years, and they decided to invite Rodriguez to their home country to express their gratitude for all she had done for them.
During the meeting, Nujoma indicated that Cuba is “the only country in the world that can talk about democracy, human rights and freedom”, saying there are countries that preach about respecting human rights, and yet the same countries attack and kill people in other countries.
“We respect Cuba for the ideals it stands for. The Cuban government provided education to thousands of Namibian children, most of them survivors of the Cassinga massacre. Cuban internationalist forces fought side-by-side with the Namibian PLAN fighters during the battle of Cuito Cuanavale in southern Angola, where they defeated the South African regime. We appreciate all Cuba has done for us,” Nujoma said.
On her part, Rodriguez said seeing the people she took care of while they were young, and who are now grown men and women, is an emotional experience.
She also said the name Sam Nujoma “shines like a star” for the values he stood for, and for his revolutionary spirit.
“I was assigned by the Cuban government to take care of these children and make sure that they complete their education. Today I can confidently say my dream has come true,” a proud Rodriguez said.
She indicated that the then president of Cuba, Fidel Castro took care of the Namibian children and made sure that they got a proper education to enable them to come back and develop their country.
She said today they are helping to develop the country as teachers, nurses, doctors, engineers, journalists, and statisticians, among others.
Professor Rodriguez and her former students were treated to lunch before they proceeded to the North.
As part of her visit, Rodriguez is expected to meet several Cabinet Ministers.
She is also scheduled to tour the Ohangwena, Oshana, Omusati, and Erongo Regions before she departs for Cuba in February next year.