ABUJA – Nigerian President Bola Tinubu has expressed condolences to the government and people of Namibia following the death of President Hage Geingob on Sunday.
In a statement, Tinubu mourned the “painful loss of a veteran in the struggle for democracy, a proponent of good governance, and an advocate for economic, social, and political solidarity among African peoples.”
“On behalf of the government and people of Nigeria, I extend our deepest condolences to the government and people of Namibia over the passing of His Excellency, President Hage Geingob,” he said.
“I mourn the painful loss of a veteran in the struggle for democracy, a proponent of good governance, and an advocate for economic, social, and political solidarity among African peoples.”
Geingob passed away at age 82 after battling cancer. He was Namibia’s longest serving prime minister and third president since the country gained independence in 1990.
“This tragedy comes at a time when Africa is in dire need of more visionary leaders who believe in our common destiny and who can strengthen the bonds across our borders and spread the tendrils of cooperation in all fields of human endeavor,” Tinubu wrote.
The Nigerian leader said his thoughts and prayers, as well as those of all Nigerians, are with the people of Namibia during this difficult time.
The two leaders met on several occasions and worked to promote trade and cooperation between their neighboring countries. Geingob’s death is considered a major loss for the region.
Born in a village in northern Namibia in 1941, Geingob was its first president outside the Ovambo ethnic group, which makes up more than half of the country’s population.
He took up activism against South Africa’s apartheid regime, which at the time ruled over Namibia, from his early schooling years before being driven into exile.
He spent almost three decades in Botswana and the US, leaving the former for the latter in 1964.