Kenya is a special friend to Namibia – Geingob

21 Mar 2019 16:40pm
WINDHEOK 21, MAR (NAMPA) – President Hage Geingob on Thursday expressed gratitude towards Kenya for its contribution to Namibia’s liberation struggle, labeling the East-African nation a ‘friend’ to Namibia due to its assistance in helping to maintain peace right after the attainment of independence.

President Geigob made these remarks during his keynote address at the 29th Independence Day celebrations in the capital.

Geingob said Namibia’s freedom was attained due the Pan-African bond shared “with our brothers and sisters in Africa, because when Namibians were victims of apartheid aggression, the people of Africa stretched out the hand of solidarity.”

He said that in the aftermath of the successful free and fair elections of 1989 and the subsequent attainment of Namibia’s independence, Kenya was there to assist until the country became steady on its feet.

“When the rest of The United Nations Transition Assistance Group (UNTAG) departed, our founding father Sam Nujoma made a brotherly appeal to the then president of Kenya, Daniel Arap Moi, for the Kenyan Blue Helmet Contingent under the leadership of Lieutenant General Daniel Ishmael Opande to remain behind for three months to help maintain stability, at the cost of the Kenyan government,” said Geingob.

The President reminded Namibians that anniversaries like this do not only offer an opportunity to reflect on where the country has come from, but also to take stock and reflect on where the country is today and where it is heading.

He added that 29 years ago, the country witnessed the lowering of the apartheid flag for the last time and the raising of the national flag, which marked the transition from old to new government.

“Independence did not only bring with it new opportunities but new challenges. The struggle for political independence was won but the struggle for economic independence had begun,” Geingob said.

He further highlighted some things that the government has achieved over the past 29 years, making specific reference to government’s establishment of the firm foundations of democracy, unity, peace, stability and how these were used to develop robust governance architecture, characterized by well-functioning processes, systems and institutions.