On behalf of the National Assembly, and on my own behalf and that of my wife, I would like to express our great sadness and deep sense of loss on the passing of Dr Nickey Iyambo, one of the founding members of the Namibian Nation.
Several tributes have already been paid to this son of the soil that have captured his stature, his contribution to the nation, as well as his character. He was a leader who was down-to-earth, accommodating, and kind-hearted.
To these tributes I would like to add my memories of Dr Nickey Iyambo during his days as a student in Helsinki, Finland, from the late 1960s to 1980. When I was assigned to set up the SWAPO office in London covering the UK and Western Europe in 1968, Comrade Nickey was already covering Finland and the Nordic countries. He operated from a simple student dormitory to build linkages with political parties, student organisations and NGOs in that part of the world.
Soon, he had built a reputation as a highly motivated and determined young man, who had the cause of his people at heart.
Comrade Nickey gained the respect and support of the Finnish people, who saw his strong sense of commitment to building a just society in a free Namibia. Among his many Finnish friends were Martti Ahtisaari, who led the UNTAG in 1989, and later served as the President of Finland, and his wife Eva.
To me, Nickey was a friend and a Comrade. We coordinated closely and built a strong bond through our work together. This became a solid partnership as we promoted the cause of the Namibian people.
The liberation struggle has shaped the characters of many of us but there are certain individual traits that we possess as individual persons from our respective upbringings.
Comrade Nickey will be remembered by many of his compatriots and beyond the borders of Namibia as a true patriot with high values and, above all, as a leader who stood for inclusiveness. To this end, parliamentarians across the party divide respected him immensely for what he stood for.
Comrade Nickey had the ability to listen to people, and he was always ready to find a solution to the problems brought to him. We will all miss his gentle manner and his wisdom.
We convey to the widow, Mrs Johanna Iyambo, the children, grandchildren and the rest of the family, our sympathy and condolences at the loss of this great man.
May his soul rest in eternal peace!
Prof Peter Katjavivi, MP
Speaker of the National Assembly
2019-05-28 11:10:10 | 4 months ago