Geingob: I can’t praise myself

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Geingob: I can’t praise myself

With little over a year left before vacating the highest office in the land, President Hage Geingob said he is leaving behind a solid legacy for all to see, while raising concern about how tribalism is tearing the country apart.

Geingob made these remarks in response to a query from this newspaper regarding the legacy he aspires to leave behind.

While initially reluctant to respond and questioning the timing of enquiries about his legacy a year before stepping down, he told New Era the international community has embraced him, and he is content with what they said about his legacy.

Last year, Geingob was rated as the third-best-performing president of Namibia’s processes, systems and instruments by African Vibes, an online magazine based in America, which defines, reflects and celebrates contemporary Africa and Africans.

His recognition, along with president Mokgweetsi Masisi of Botswana in second place and Mauritius’ president Prithvirajsing Roopun in first position, was determined by using key indicators such as the United Nations Human Development Index, the Transparency International Corruption Perception Index, and the Ibrahim Index of African Governance, amongst others.

“Legacy has to be told by people. I cannot say I did this and that. But so far, maybe not from Namibians, but from the international communities, what I am hearing about my legacy, I am very happy with it,” said the head of State.

Avoiding self-praise, the President said his legacy is evident for anyone willing to see it.

“Take the difficulties the country was in, and where it is today. That is how you talk about legacy,” he noted.



Acknowledging the efforts the country has made to maintain peace, Geingob also shared his disappointment at the increasing tribalism amongst Namibians.

“We are now becoming tribal, and I am disappointed about that. We never had tribal wars here or a civil war, and it’s important to maintain that,” he stated.




He urged the nation to thus see each other beyond their ethnicities and colour.

“I talk about the Namibian house, but that Namibian house must be built. We need to lay the foundation, put on bricks, and once the wall is complete, we plaster it and paint it with Namibian colours. Then, you will not see individual bricks. We are from different ethnic groups and races, white and black, and even that relationship improved a lot in this country,” he gushed.

This, he said, is a legacy he wants to leave behind.

In unequivocal terms, Geingob observed that challenges have indeed arisen, with people expressing complaints, a phenomenon he considers positive, as it reflects a yearning for change.

“It’s true people are complaining, they are crying. When you have no hope, you sit and suffer quietly. But when you have hope and see the light at the end of the tunnel, you will make noise because the goal is reachable, and keep saying as long as you are making noise, you are doing the right thing. You have hope in your country, that is why you are demanding, rightly so, and you don’t go pick up the guns,” he added.

“Keep on making noise. Demand from us leaders, because that’s your right. But you must also add something, not just demanding. So, that is the Namibian house I am talking about, and that is the legacy I want to leave. When I go in one year, then you will see. You are the one who is going to talk about my legacy,” Geingob said.

The country is set to go to the polls late next year to elect the next president. 

Geingob will be succeeded by Swapo Party vice president Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah as the party president. If successful in the presidential elections next year, she will assume the presidency of the country.