President Ramaphosa and Jeannette Kagame Gather in Namibia to Honor President Geingob’s Legacy

In February 2024, a significant gathering of African leaders and dignitaries took place in Windhoek, Namibia, to pay homage to the late President Hage Geingob, who passed away after a battle with cancer at the age of 87. Among the attendees were Jeannette Kagame, the First Lady of Rwanda, and Cyril Ramaphosa, the President of South Africa, both of whom expressed profound personal and national loss.

Jeannette Kagame arrived in Namibia on February 10, 2024, to extend her condolences to Monica Geingos, the widow of President Geingob, and their family. The connection between the two women is not only personal but also professional, as they are both members of the Organization of African First Ladies against HIV/AIDS (OAFLA). Currently, Monica Geingos holds the position of chairperson of OAFLA, underscoring the impact of their roles beyond their national duties.

On the same day, President Cyril Ramaphosa was also present in Windhoek, marking a united front of African leadership in the face of loss. Ramaphosa’s words, “We have lost a brother,” encapsulate the deep sense of bereavement felt across the continent. His remarks not only highlighted the personal friendship he shared with Geingob but also affirmed the strong bilateral relations between South Africa and Namibia, emphasizing that these ties would continue to thrive despite the former Namibian leader’s death.

In the wake of President Geingob’s passing, the newly sworn-in Namibian President, Nangolo Mbumba, announced February 24 as the official date for the funeral. President Mbumba’s statement not only addresses the nation’s mourning but also signifies the respect and honor being accorded to Geingob’s legacy. As Namibia’s first Prime Minister following its independence from apartheid South Africa in 1990, Geingob’s contributions to the country’s development and governance are indelible.

President Ramaphosa, reflecting on Geingob’s legacy, lauded him as “Africa’s champion for peace and development.” This acknowledgment speaks volumes about Geingob’s influence and the void his passing leaves not only in Namibia but across the African continent.