We mourn the loss of an outstanding leader and a distinguished son of Namibia. His Excellency, Dr Hage G. Geingob, has left indelible footprints on the face of his beloved country, Namibia.
Characteristically jovial and larger-than-life, President Geingob was a man of high moral and ethical principles. He believed in doing what is right for his country and people.
He believed in inclusivity. He believed in, and advocated for, transparent leadership, independent and functioning organs of state,and media freedom, amongst other principles.
He pronounced himself unequivocally on his principles and core beliefs. He pushed for the implementation of policies that would take Namibia to a higher level in different facets.
President Geingob was committed to Namibia. At a young age, he participated in political activities aimed at liberating Namibia, even if it meant him being expelled from school.
He brilliantly represented Namibia, and positioned its cause, at the United Nations. He expertly led the Namibia Institute in Zambia, that prepared Namibians for effectively running an independent Namibia.
Critically, he led the process that delivered the most progressive, democratic and highly respected Constitution in the world! We just witnessed the practical effect of this Constitution with his recent passing, when the nation experienced a smooth and peaceful transfer of power to his successor.
As the first and longest-serving Prime Minister, Dr Geingob shaped the administration machinery of government, and positioned it to deliver to Namibians. And as President, he drove the message of inclusivity and socio-economic development. He led the country well during the Covid-19 pandemic years, and prevented the economy from collapsing whilst ensuring the health, safety and protection of Namibians.
Cumulatively, his contributions have significantly shaped who we are as a nation today. We have a well-managed economy. We have a government administration architecture that is systematically grounded.
We have a constitution that is practical and whose respect is embedded in our national psyche.
We have independent and functioning organs of state. Our economy is now poised for a major breakthrough, with the discovery and development of oil, gas and green energy resources.
Let us honour him by jealously guarding his legacy. Let us commit ourselves to the inclusive development of Namibia. Let us protect our democracy. Go well, President!
*Sakaria Nghikembua is the group chief executive officer of Momentum Metropolitan Namibia