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Cuban president to grace Heroes’ Day

2023-08-25  Staff Reporter

Cuban president to grace Heroes’ Day

IN a move to enhance and cement historic ties between Cuba and Namibia, Cuban president Mario Diaz-Canel is set to be the guest of honour during tomorrow’s Heroes’ Day celebrations. 

The 33rd Heroes’ Day commemoration was scheduled to take place at Omuthiya in Oshikoto region, but was moved to Windhoek.

The executive director in the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology, Audrin Mathe earlier this week said the change of venue was necessitated by the state visit of the president of the Republic of Cuba, Miguel Diaz-Canel Bermudez, to Namibia on invitation by President Hage Geingob.

“The government wishes to invite Namibians from all corners of the country to come in their numbers and commemorate the selfless acts of sacrifice while reaffirming our patriotism that fosters pride and duty towards our nation,” said Mathe.

The event will also be live-streamed on the ministry’s Facebook page.

Heroes’ Day is commemorated on 26 August to pay tribute to fallen heroes and heroines in different battles of resistance against the apartheid colonial regime. 

The first bullet to trigger war against the then apartheid South African government was fired on 26 August 1966 at Omugulugwombashe in the Omusati region.

The Cuban president’s visit is expected to bolster the already strong bilateral relations between the two nations.

The bond between Cuba and Namibia is deeply rooted in a shared history of friendship, solidarity, and mutual support, particularly during pivotal moments in both countries’ struggles for independence. 

Authorities from both Cuba and Namibia have acknowledged this special relationship and their joint pursuit of development.

Veteran Namibia Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) journalist Peter Denk, who has closely followed the two countries’ ties after independence, said the visit by president Diaz-Canel on this occasion holds profound historical significance, particularly in light of Heroes’ Day, which commemorates Namibia’s valiant fight for liberation.

He highlighted the importance of the Cuban president’s visit in the context of shared liberation history.

“It is really quite significant, especially at this time of Heroes’ Day. Cubans are regarded as heroes in Namibia for playing a significant role in Namibia’s liberation struggle,” Denk emphasised.

Namibia has an established partnership with Cuba, marked by 120 collaborations across various sectors. 

The visit by Diaz-Canel is anticipated to further solidify this relationship and explore additional avenues of cooperation between the two countries.

 Denk pointed out that the visit underscores the significance both nations place on their historical ties, which have extended beyond political realms.

“While political ties are quite substantial, I think what both countries will look at is the deepening of economic cooperation,” Denk elaborated. 

He said the visit provides an opportune moment for both nations to explore potential areas of collaboration that can mutually benefit their economies.

- Additional reporting by Nampa

2023-08-25  Staff Reporter

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