The same unity and determination that inspired Namibians to fight against colonialism and apartheid would be critical in overcoming the challenges facing the nation, President Hage Geingob said yesterday. In his Cassinga Day message, the head of state said the struggle for independence was indeed long and bitter.
“Many sacrifices were made, blood was shed and many lives were lost during the protracted war for the liberation of Namibia,” he said, as Namibians marked 42 years since the Cassinga massacre in which more than 600 people, mostly women and children, were killed by South African apartheid forces in a refugee camp in southern Angola.
Geingob said the incident at Cassinga left survivors with permanent scars and harrowing memories. “We remember the survivors of the brutal attack on that fateful day. We remember and honour those who gave their lives for the freedom and independence of our country so that we can build a united and inclusive Namibia, free of discrimination, tribalism and racism,” Geingob said.
He said Namibians owe it to the martyrs, heroes and heroines who sacrificed their lives, to build a nation that restores the dignity of all Namibians, promotes equality and equity – and most importantly, ensure all have access to basic amenities and services such as clean drinking water, electricity, education, health care and other basic amenities and services.
“I have no doubt that the same unity and determination that inspired Namibians from all parts of the country to join hands in the fight against colonialism will inspire us today to fight and overcome the challenges facing our nation, including Covid-19.” Geingob said the path to freedom often comes with great loss and high costs.
The Cassinga settlement, of which the majority of inhabitants consisted of unarmed women and children, served as a reception camp for Namibians who fled from Namibia into Angola in resistance of the illegal occupation of their Motherland. The brutal massacre of women and children at Cassinga was a deliberate act by the South African military.
“This desperate act of barbarism was carried out in the hope of instilling fear and to discourage Namibians from pursuing the path of armed struggle. As history proved, our belief and spirit never wavered,” Geingob said.
Geingob said the Cassinga massacre intensified Namibians resolve to unite and fight for the liberation of our country, a precedent set by the country’s forbearers such as Samuel Maharero, Kaptein Hendrik Witbooi and King Nehale lyaMpingana, who united in resistance of German colonialism during the war that started in 1904, leading to the extermination of mostly the OvaHerero and Nama tribes.
2020-05-05 10:15:38 | 23 days ago