’Farewell Comrade Bongi’

The late Ambassador Andrew Anyanya ‘Bongi’ Intamba was “a man of unshakable dedication with a high degree of courage,” President Hifikepunye Pohamba said yesterday at the memorial service of Itamba at Parliament Gardens in Windhoek. Intamba, a recipient of the Order of Namibia Eagle 2nd Class Medal and the honorary rank of Army Colonel, died on April 08 at Rhino Park Private Hospital in Windhoek having taken ill for some weeks. He died six days before his birthday. He was Namibia’s Ambassador to Egypt since 2008 and served as the Director of the Namibia Central Intelligence Service before his diplomatic posting.

In his eulogy the Founding President Dr Sam Nujoma said: “When I say Comrade Intamba was a fearless freedom fighter who never wavered, I do not do so merely for political relevance. I say so because he was a reliable PLAN (People’s Liberation Army of Namibia) commander with an unbroken resolve, undiminished energy, unshakeable dedication and an unwavering patriotism.”

Born on April 14, 1947 in Walvis Bay, Intamba was one of the pioneers of PLAN. He was a member of reconnaissance teams that during the war frequented the inside of Namibia from outside, working also as the courier of money to members of the Central Committee of Swapo’s Internal Wing inside the country.

Nujoma said Intamba would be remembered for the Ohaukelo battle in April 1976, the battle of Elombe, as well as for the battle at Eengodi dhaNatuwe “where he operated a bazooka rocket launcher to free his fellow PLAN combatants” resulting in no causalities of his fellow fighters.

Intamba as PLAN commander from the Military Council, was also part of the delegation that met with the South African generals who were headed by Major General Willie Meyer, the commanding officer of the then colonial South West Africa Territorial Force (SWATF) at Ruacana on April 18, 1989.

It was for the first time in the history of the armed liberation struggle that the two warring parties sat at the negotiating table directly opposite each other.

“I had instructed Nahas Angula, the then Swapo secretary for education, Erastus Negonga, the then commander of the North-Western Front, with the task to give the South African generals an ultimatum, to choose whether to continue fighting or to grant PLAN combatants free passage back to Angola, in compliance with the Mount Etjo Accord,” reminisced Nujoma.

“We are consoled by the knowledge that he lived to see a free and independent Namibia as the sweet fruit of his sacrifices and labour,” Nujoma consoled mourners.

Intamba is survived by five children, four girls and one boy, and his wife Johanna Naambo. He will be buried today at the Heroes Acre in Windhoek.

Source : New Era