Windhoek - The relationship between South Africa and Namibia remains anchored on mutual respect, shared values, solidarity and understanding within the context of Pan-Africanism, South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Co-operation, Dr Naledi Pandor, has said.
In her congratulatory message which she delivered on behalf of President Cyril Ramaphosa at Namibian President Hage Geingob’s inauguration and Namibia’s 30th Independence celebrations last week, Pandor said the two countries were also cognisant of the need to defeat their common enemy, poverty and underdevelopment.
She said Namibia’s independence in 1990 was celebrated globally by freedom-loving people and Africa and the developing world at large regard Namibia as one of the premier African democracies, both in word and in deed.
“Since achieving liberation 30 years ago, Namibia has been a beacon of democracy, peace and stability, clearly demonstrating post-colonial Africa’s determination to define its own destiny on its own terms,” Pandor said.
She said Namibia’s independence communicated a clear message that the path to freedom for South Africa was assured and irreversible.
“Mr President, from the African Union’s perspective, we view Namibia as an integral partner in advancing the African agenda and remain committed to working closely with Your Excellency, the government and the people of Namibia in pursuit of greater regional integration through the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) as well as continental political and economic integration as articulated in the AU’s Agenda 2063.
“During our chairship of the AU, South Africa will continue to rely on the support of Namibia as it pursues the strategic goals that underpin its role as chair of the African Union. As the chair, we have embraced the theme, ‘Silencing the Guns: Creating Conducive Conditions for Africa’s Development’. Again we lean on the exemplary leadership of Namibia in ensuring that this important AU objective becomes a living reality.”
She said South Africa and Namibia also shared the responsibility for continued efforts to strengthen SADC as a necessary building block for continental unity and development.
“We trust that through the entrenchment of democracy on the African continent, of which Namibia is among the leading lights, as well as the creation of sustainable peace and stability, Africa will steadily but surely advance towards its defined vision,” said Pandor.