New Era (Windhoek)

7 December 2012

Namibia: Hug-A - Geingob ? That's a Bargain

opinion

THE Namibian nation must as a question of necessity back-page into the political history to a date that is not only significant to Gottfried Hage Geingob but to all of us in this desert-sandwiched south-west African territory we have unanimously baptized Namibia.

Gottfried's hands are still sweaty and his memories about the cause of that ever sweet and unforgettable. I am talking about an important day on the calendar of the liberation movement when he led the first repatriation of a plane-load of men, women and exile-born children to the tarmac of what is patriotically now internationally known as Hosea Kutako Airport outside the capital, Windhoek.

To kill the suspense - the day is 18 June 1989 to be precise when he carried the blue, red and green flag of the ruling party SWAPO and was the first to disembark after more than a quarter of a century in political exile lived in various parts of the globe while contributing to the political, diplomatic and military struggle waged by the ever heroic Namibian people.

The world watched unbelievably but happy to see this son of this country kiss the soil of his motherland with unseen tears rolling profusely in his heart - the nation wept with him and I shed real tears in Lusaka, Zambia.

Gottfried is here now with us and God willing, he will be here with us for long we all pray.

The Christian name of this author is Peter and we, the old friends and comrades, also know that "Gottfried" is Hage's Christian name and I have been employing it ceaselessly with a purpose that I will explain in a few words today.

What is in a name, many of us will ask ourselves... there is more than meets the eye you will later agree with this author. Gottfried is a German name. And it came with the Germans holding a Bible in one hand and a gun in the other. The consequences of their arrival more so after 1884 are obvious wherever you go in this beloved country. There are many German names and many graves of the victims of German colonialism.

"Gott" stands for God and "fried" is related to peace - Gottfried is a beautiful name, please agree with me just this one time. However, we have our pride and that is probably the fundamental reason why he re-arranged the parade of his names - we cannot blame him for after all it is a free, democratic country as you will see more so from now onwards.

He was the Director of Elections before independence, SWAPO won massively and Gottfried with the blessings from above became the first Prime Minister. He carried the official flag from exile and the recent Congress demonstrated that he is one of the millions of blessed Namibians.

Thus unashamedly Hug- A Gein-gob - it's the biggest Xmas bargain!

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