President Hage Geingob has called on Namibians to guard the peace and stability enjoyed in the country jealously.
In his Cassinga Day message yesterday, he also paid glowing tribute to the brave fighters and those who were on the frontline of the liberation struggle for having “endured unspoken hardships, and bled and died in the name of our freedom”.
“We, therefore, salute the bravery and selflessness of all the men and women whose sacrifices have made it possible for us to be free today. This year marks 43 years since the deadly Cassinga massacre of innocent civilians,” he said.
On 4 May 1978, a Swapo refugee camp at Cassinga suffered airstrikes and an invasion of paratroopers in the early hours, leaving 300 children, 294 women and 165 men dead, while misplacing 200 Namibians.
“On this fateful day, 4 May 1978, we recall the merciless attack on hundreds of our innocent citizens, women and children, who had taken refuge at a transit refugee camp in the Angolan village of Cassinga in the early morning hours, resulting in a bloody massacre by the then South African Defence Force,” narrated Geingob.
“As we commemorate the sons and daughters who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom, we honour our brothers and sisters of Angola and Cuba for their support during our bitter struggle for liberation, and for paying the ultimate sacrifice for our independence and sovereignty. In remembering the heroes of our liberation struggle, I wish to implore all Namibians to guard our peace and stability jealously. Where there is no peace, there can be no development. And where there is no development, there can be no peace.”