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By: Joseph Sheefeni & Valeria Handobe 

In the wake of the passing of the country’s third president Hage Geingob, this year’s Independence Day celebration marks the first major event since his departure.

Mangaliso Touré, the eldest son of Geingob who currently lives in the U.S., reflected on his father’s lasting impact on the nation.  According to Mangaliso, his father’s spirit continues to resonate in every corner of the country, profoundly influencing the lives of the people.

Mangaliso acknowledged the role his father played in building the ‘Namibian House. He hopes his father’s legacy of unity and harmony will continue among the Namibian people.

“This will be the first Independence Day that my father will not be here,” said Mangaliso, noting how his visits to Namibia will be different.

“Every trip coming back home to Namibia will not be the same, I will not be seeing my father. But his spirit permeated every fibre of this country, every person,” he said. 

During his tenure as head of state, Hage Geingob often expressed his aspiration to leave Namibia in a better state than he found it. Mangaliso echoes this sentiment, emphasising his father’s commitment to inclusivity and his vision for eradicating poverty. 

“I did not just lose my father. The nation lost their president, the nation lost a father figure, individuals lost, not just people related to us but individuals who had a connection to him because he was a people person.”

“If that connection can be maintained and improved upon, and nurtured. So naturally it evolves to a point where we see Namibia as the place that it was meant to be, where all are included. Where no one is made to feel left out,” Mangaliso said. 

Mangaliso has since returned to his home state of South Carolina, United States. However, he did state that his connection to Namibia remains strong and urged Namibians to continue to uphold his father’s values of unity and progress, as he would, from afar.