16 April 2018

South Africa: Geingob Bids Winnie Mandela Farewell

Windhoek — What set the late Winnie Madikizela-Mandela apart was that she never elevated herself above the people, President Hage Geingob said at the funeral of the late Madikizela-Mandela. Geingob said they came to mourn and to celebrate a life of a daughter of the African soil, who did not choose to be larger than life, but through her selfless actions, became a towering figure in the milieu of the liberation struggle.

"She was a woman who was the epitome of black female resistance against oppression, racism and imperialism," he added.

Geingob said Madikizela-Mandela remained rooted to the people of South Africa, even when she assumed higher responsibilities.

"Despite the hardships of the struggle, she emerged ever defiant and brimming with more determination to bring about change in the lives of her brothers and sisters," said Geingob at the burial of Madikizela- Mandela on Saturday.

Madikizela-Mandela, 81, was the hero of the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa and ex-wife of that country's first democratically elected president Nelson Mandela. She died in Johannesburg two weeks ago after a long illness.

In addition, Geingob said last year, he decided to honour Madikizela-Mandela with the highest honour of Namibia but she was unfortunately not able to receive her honour in person. "I am, therefore, inviting my sisters to Namibia to receive this honour so that Namibia can pay a befitting honour on her," he said.

According to the press secretary, Dr Alfredo Hengari, Madikizela-Mandela was bestowed with the most brilliant order of the Sun first class in 2015 on August 26 at the Heroes Acre.

Hengari said Geingob recognized through the award the extraordinary role Mama Winnie Mandela played in the struggle for freedom in South Africa and Africa.

Geingob further said Madikizela-Mandela leaves behind a legacy of sacrifice, dedication and commitment. "As a role model, she leaves behind a template of stellar character, which the youth of the day can apply in the pursuit of their dreams. Her legacy is established and firmly rooted among our people. Her burning flame of passion shall continue to illuminate our lives, as we continue our struggle into its second phase -that of economic emancipation," he said.

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