24 Years of Independence

President Hifikepunye Pohamba has urged fellow politicians, civil servants, farmers, engineers, traditional and community leaders to play their part in contributing to the development of Namibia that last Friday celebrated 24 years of independence.

“Each one of us, whether we are teachers, nurses, engineers, lawyers, farmers, civil servants, business persons, politicians, traditional leaders, spiritual leaders, community leaders, peasants or other ordinary citizens should play our role and contribute to the development of our country,” he said at the 24th independence anniversary celebrations in Windhoek on Friday.

The celebrations were attended by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan, First Lady Patience Jonathan, the Founding Father of the Namibian Nation, Dr Sam Nujoma, Prime Minister Dr Hage Geingob, several Cabinet ministers and members of the diplomatic corps, among others.

Addressing a huge crowd at the Independence Stadium, Pohamba said the Namibian government has always focused on and prioritized the delivery of basic public services essential for the improvement of the living conditions of its people. Pohamba said government has consistently placed “the provision of education, health care, housing, electricity and potable water at the centre of its service delivery strategies”.

“We have implemented policies that empower women, the youth, veterans of the liberation struggle, the elderly, people with disabilities, as well as orphans and vulnerable children.

“Currently we are implementing the National Mass Housing Programme to address the housing backlog in the country. More than 108 000 houses will be built over the next 17 years targeting and benefiting thousands of citizens, especially the low-income groups, including those who currently live in informal settlements,” he stressed.

He said there is no other urgent, or more pressing duty on the collective shoulders of the nation than the imperative of pursuing the task of nation building and economic development with dedication and commitment.

Pohamba also said the peaceful transfer of political power in Namibia “has become the norm rather than the exception. It is on this basis that on 21st March 2005, there was a peaceful and orderly handover of power to me from the Founding President of our Republic, His Excellency Dr Sam Nujoma, whose term of office had come to an end in terms of the national constitution.” He added that he would also peacefully and democratically hand over power next year on March 21 to the next president.

“As a nation, we shall continue to work hand in hand within SADC, the AU, the United Nations and other international organisations towards global peace and security and sustainable development,” he said.

“Similarly, we will continue to stand firm in solidarity with the peoples of Western Sahara and Palestine until they too are able to exercise their inalienable right to self-determination,” he said.

Source : New Era