21 March 2023
On the occasion of the 33rd Independence Day of the Republic of Namibia, the Diplomatic Informer Magazine SA wishes to convey to the Government and the people of Namibia our warm wishes, and would like to congratulate the Republic of Namibia in celebrating their 33rd National Day on 21 March 2023
Namibia Independence Day is marked on March 21 every year to commemorate the day the nation became a sovereign state. Namibia is a country located in the southern part of Africa that has seen many shifts in political power over the years. Namibia gained its full independence in 1990 and got its recognition as an independent nation. This independence day is marked as a national holiday in Namibia, and the day is celebrated with parades and political ceremonies attended by the top leaders. Proud citizens celebrate the day wishing prosperity and peace for the country.
HISTORY OF NAMIBIA INDEPENDENCE DAY
The country’s name has its origins in the word ‘nama’ which means ‘vast place.’ Nama was used to refer to the Namib desert, which is said to be the oldest desert in the world. In prehistoric times, Namibia was occupied by ethnic African tribes such as Nama, San, and Damara. The first European expedition to Namibia was in 1485 when Portuguese explorer Diogo Cao reached the southern African country.
In 1884, Namibia became a German colony under Otto Von Bismarck. At that time the country was known as Deutsch-Südwestafrika which translated to South-West Africa. In 1904, the German occupiers systematically executed over 10,000 natives of Namibia. After Germany’s defeat in World War 1, the country was taken over by South Africa. After World War 2, following the U.N.’s sanctions, South Africa was asked to give up control over Namibia, which it refused.
In the 1970s, the revolts for independence began. The people of Namibia were motivated as this is also the time when neighboring countries like Angola and Zambia had gained their independence from South Africa. The guerilla group, the People’s Liberation Army of Namibia led the struggle for the independence of Namibia from South Africa. In 1988, South Africa agreed to give Namibia its much-awaited freedom. On March 21, 1990, Namibia gained its freedom and the country was renamed the Republic of Namibia. Sam Nujoma was chosen as the first President of the Republic of Namibia.
Speech by His Excellency President Hage Geingob on the occasion of the 33rd Independence Day Anniversary at Outapi Stadium in Outapi, Omusati Region.
What is independence? By simple definition, independence is the freedom from the control and influence of others. In other words, one doesn’t depend on other people. It is the ability for one to pursue one’s own destiny without hindrance, without fear and without limitations. There is no greater guarantor of human dignity than independence. Independence is, without a doubt, the bulwark that safeguards the culture and identity of a people. It is a source of pride; a symbol of respect and standing in the global village. Indeed, independence is more valuable than wealth and prosperity because in its absence, no one can dare to dream, and no nation can dare to build.
In that context, it gives me great pleasure to be here in Outapi to join you in celebrating our 33rd Independence Day Anniversary.
It is said that the gift of independence can not be given to you but can only be taken. Indeed, as we commemorate this historic day, we pay tribute to those brave men and women who took it upon themselves to secure our independence from the clutches of tyranny and colonial oppression. We thank these gallant sons and daughters; from combatants to clergy, from teachers to students, from business people to workers, from athletes to artists, from young to old, from those who were in exile to those who were at the home front.
These freedom fighters, of whom some sacrificed their lives, all played an instrumental role in the struggle and thereby ensured that Namibians obtained independence and sovereignty. Thus, their unwavering determination changed the destiny of the Namibian people.
Thus, the declaration of our independence is written in the blood of our brave daughters and gallant sons. For as the Argentine revolutionary, Ernesto “Che” Guevara said, “We can not be sure of having something to live for unless we are willing to die for it.” Therefore, in order for us to live today as free and independent Namibians, others who came before us had to die for it. We should never forget that. We should never forget those who paid the ultimate price.
Furthermore, we also acknowledge the invaluable role played by the friendly nations of Africa led by the OAU/Liberation Committee and the Frontline States and the members of the international community led by the United Nations and the United Nations Council for Namibia and members of the International Community such as the Former USSR, the Russian Federation, the Republic of Cuba, the Peoples Republic of China, the Scandinavian countries and many others, like the support groups in America and the rest of Europe, who responded favourably in support of our just cause to fight for freedom.
With this in mind, let us appreciate the important date of March 21st, for this day should remind us of the momentous occasion in 1989, when for the first time, thousands of Namibians went to the polls and cast their vote for freedom and independence. That collective decision permanently and positively changed the lives of each and every Namibian. Therefore, today is a day to reflect on the positive emotions brought forward by the gift of independence. It is a day to look forward to hope and optimism and confidence in our national revival. It is a day to forget divisions and differences in order to bond with family, friends, and community under the single roof of our inclusive Namibian House.
At this stage in our nation’s history, we are cognizant of the fact that independence alone, without economic emancipation, will threaten our hard-won peace and security. For this reason, I outlined, in my State of the Nation Address last Thursday, that we intend to move with lightning speed to capitalize on the myriad of economic endowments we possess, in a coordinated manner, in recognition of the urgent need to create more new jobs.
Indeed, it is a given that we must be forward looking at, and what better time to move forward than at this time when green shoots are on the horizon and our revival is within reach. However, for us to forge the road ahead, we must acknowledge the path that has led us to this very day, this very year, in which we commemorate 33 years of nationhood. It is this path that will inform us of potential dangers, threats, and opportunities.
In this vein, as we celebrate the gift of freedom and sovereignty, we should endeavor to pursue our economic emancipation with determination. We should endeavor to place the national good above personal interest, bias, or prejudices. We must cultivate the positive aspects of our national identity and realize that only by holding hands and pulling together in one direction will we be able to continue our journey of development. Wherever there are shortcomings, we should all take responsibility to correct them for this is our national duty, this is our country, and this is the only place on earth that we can call home.
As your President, I have sworn to always protect our nation’s independence and sovereignty on behalf of all Namibians.
I am fully aware that after 33 years of sustained progress and numerous milestones, there is still work to be done for us to achieve the dreams and aspirations outlined in our National Development Plans and Vision 2030, which are augmented by the Harambee Prosperity Plans.
It is for this reason that several days ago, I outlined, in my State of the Nation Address, key government policies and strategies aimed at taking advantage of our natural resources and economic green shoots. Through these policies and strategies, we plan to develop the green hydrogen industry and oil and gas sub-sectors, as well as enhance agricultural production as a means for accelerating industrial development and job creation in Namibia. As a Government we understand the needs of our people for jobs, shelter, food and self-actualization, and therefore we remain seized with improving the livelihoods of all Namibia’s citizens with the understanding that only through shared prosperity can peace be maintained.
In this respect, we must ensure that the struggle for economic emancipation does not become a justification for the fomenting of social unrest and division.
As a free and independent nation with a history of a long and bitter struggle, we should reject any efforts to divide our citizens based on tribal, ethnic, racial, gender or religious differences. As a Government committed to the improvement of the social welfare of Namibians, we will always strive to protect the fundamental rights of all and ensure that we all follow in the spirit of One Namibia, One Nation.
We live in an ever-changing world with numerous challenges as well as opportunities. Therefore, as we navigate our course towards prosperity and a better life for all, we must remain vigilant in order to circumvent the various obstacles that are ahead of us. Let us, therefore, take courage from our recent successes in curbing the onslaught of Covid-19 and adopt the tried and tested principles of unity and teamwork, which have enabled us to prevail against all odd I have the utmost confidence that if we continue in the Harambee spirit, we will enjoy countless successes moving forward as a nation.
On this 33rd Independence Day, we are encouraged by the fact that we have made tremendous strides as a people and as a nation, enjoying peace and stability and development. With each step we take, we get closer to the realization of our collective dreams and aspirations.
In this vein, we are grateful that 33 years after that monumental day on March 21, 1990, we can be joined by the icon who played center stage in the struggle and on that day. I speak of none other than Comrade Sam Shafiishuna Nujoma, Founding
President and Father of the Namibian Revolution, who is also the former President of SWAPO and Commander-In-Chief of the People’s Liberation Army of Namibia (PLAN) and the Head of State and Commander-in-Chief of the Namibian Army. This living legend, through his extraordinary leadership and his unyielding commitment to the freedom and independence of Namibia, provided the motivation and driving force for thousands of brave Namibians to sacrifice their lives in the name of freedom.
Let me also recognize the other icon, that’s our Second President Comrade, Hifikepunye Pohamba, who equally played a significant role in the liberation of Namibia. He is not with us today, but he sent his greetings to wish us a Happy Independence Day.
Today, thanks to the blood of the brave that waters our freedom, we stand as a people free from the shackles of bondage, free from the pursuit of tyranny, free from the scourge of war. Today, we stand united as one person, one, one Namibia, one Nation. Today, we celebrate 33 years of unity, liberty, and justice.
I therefore wish all Namibians a joyful 33rd Independence Day. May God bless you all, and may God bless the Republic of Namibia.
LONG LIVE THE REPUBLIC OF NAMIBIA.