The Guardian • Issue #2087

President and anti-apartheid fighter dies

  • The Guardian
  • Issue #2087
Hage Geingob

Hage Geingob, President of the Republic of Namibia, addresses the UN General Assembly. Photo: UN Photo/Cia Pak (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Hage Geingob, the president of Namibia, has died while receiving medical treatment at a local hospital, his office has announced.

The Namibian presidency said in a social media post that President Geingob died with his wife, Monica Geingob, and children by his side.

He was undergoing treatment for cancer.

Acting President Nangolo Mbumba called for calm, saying in the same post that the “Cabinet will convene with immediate effect in order to make the necessary state arrangements.”

According to Namibia’s constitution, there should be an election to choose a new president within 90 days of Mr Geingob’s death.

The former anti-apartheid activist survived an assassination attempt from the South African apartheid regime and exile, to become the SWAPO representative to the United Nations and eventually  became president of Namibia in 2015. He was set to finish his second and final term in office in November.

Condolences from international leaders poured in.

Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa posted on X that Geingob’s “leadership and resilience will be remembered.”

Cyril Ramaphosa, president of neighbouring South Africa, described Mr Geingob as “a towering veteran of Namibia’s liberation from colonialism and apartheid.”

President Geingob was a fierce supporter of Palestine, recently saying: “No peace-loving human being can ignore the carnage waged against Palestinians in Gaza.”

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