Namibian President Hage Geingob laid to rest at Heroes’ Acre cemetery after state funeral

Namibian President Hage Geingob laid to rest at Heroes
Mourners follow the flag-draped coffin of the late Namibian President Hage Geingob during his funeral service in Windhoek, Namibia, Sunday, Feb. 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Esther Mbathera)

Namibian President Hage Geingob was laid to rest at Heroes.

Namibian President Hage Geingob was laid to rest at the Heroes’ Acre cemetery following a state funeral attended by African leaders, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, and Princess Anne. Geingob, who died at 82 while receiving cancer treatment, was Namibia’s third president since gaining independence in 1990. His widow, Monica Geingos, paid tribute to his rise from humble roots at a memorial service, stating, “You were born a peasant and died a president.” The funeral, attended by representatives from 27 countries, featured the draped Namibian flag on Geingob’s coffin, carried in a glass case on a military trailer.

Germany’s President Steinmeier, at the memorial service, expressed the need for Germany to extend an official apology to Namibia for atrocities committed during the 1904-1908 genocide, where German forces killed tens of thousands of Namibia’s Herero and Nama ethnic groups. In 2021, Germany offered Namibia $1.1 billion in reparations, which was rejected by Namibian Parliament and communities, demanding an improved offer. Steinmeier emphasized a commitment to reconciliation and taking responsibility for the past.

Geingob’s final resting place is in one of Heroes’ Acre’s mausoleums, reserved for Namibians awarded national hero status. Geingob played a pivotal role in establishing Namibia as one of Africa’s stable democracies after a long exile as an anti-apartheid activist. Namibia gained independence after enduring German and apartheid South African rule. Geingob served as president since 2015 and was completing his second term this year. Vice President Nangolo Mbumba was sworn in as acting president upon Geingob’s death, with Namibia set to elect a new president in November.

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