Namibia’s President Hage Geingob died early Sunday in a hospital in Windhoek, at the age of 82.
The death of Namibia’s longest-serving prime minister and third president was announced by his office.
Geingob, who was serving his second term as president and was his country’s first prime minister after independence. He was first elected president in 2014.
“It is with utmost sadness and regret that I inform you that our beloved Dr. Hage G. Geingob, the President of the Republic of Namibia, has passed on today,” read a statement signed by acting president Nangolo Mbumba.
“At his side, was his dear wife Madame Monica Geingos and his children.”
“The Namibian nation has lost a distinguished servant of the people, a liberation struggle icon, the chief architect of our constitution and the pillar of the Namibian house,” said Mbumba.
“At this moment of deepest sorrow, I appeal to the nation to remain calm and collected while the government attends to all necessary state arrangements, preparations and other protocols.”
Last month, Geingob revealed that he was being treated for cancer.
Recently, he supported South Africa’s complaint against Israel under the Genocide Convention and by condemning Namibia’s former colonial ruler Germany for rejecting the case.
President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa said: “Today, South Africa joins the people of our sister state Namibia in mourning the passing of a leader, patriot and friend of South Africa.
“President Geingob was a towering veteran of Namibia’s liberation from colonialism and apartheid. He was also greatly influential in the solidarity that the people of Namibia extended to the people of South Africa so that we could be free today.”
In 2013, Geingob underwent brain surgery, and last year he had an aortic operation in neighbouring South Africa.
Up until his death, he had been receiving treatment at Lady Pohamba Hospital in Windhoek.
Ifunanya Ikueze is an Engineer, Safety Professional, Writer, Investor, Entrepreneur and Educator.