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Nangolo Mbumba sworn in as Namibia’s 4th president following passing of Hage Geingob

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Xinhua


Nangolo Mbumba, the former vice president of Namibia, took the oath of office on Sunday in the capital Windhoek, officially becoming the nation’s 4th president after former President Hage Geingob passed away earlier this morning at the age of 82.

The swearing-in ceremony extended beyond the presidency, as Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, the former deputy prime minister and minister of International Relations and Cooperation, assumed the role of the new vice president.

Nangolo Mbumba, born on Aug. 15, 1941, had previously served as the second vice president of Namibia since 2018. A dedicated member of the South West Africa People’s Organization (SWAPO), Mbumba boasts an extensive career, having led various ministries in Namibia.

His portfolio includes Minister of Agriculture, Water and Rural Development (1993-1996), Minister of Finance (1996-2003), Minister of Information and Broadcasting (2003-2005), Minister of Education (2005-2010), and Minister of Safety and Security (2010-2012). From 2012 to 2017, Mbumba held the position of secretary-general of the ruling SWAPO.

In a statement released by the Namibian Presidency on Sunday morning, Mbumba said, “It is with utmost sadness and regret that I inform you that our beloved Dr. Hage G. Geingob, the President of the Republic of Namibia, has passed on today, Sunday 4 February 2024 at around 00h04 at Lady Pohamba Hospital where he was receiving medical treatment from his medical team.”

Geingob, the first prime minister and third president of Namibia, traversed a remarkable journey from an anti-apartheid activist to a statesman of great repute throughout his career. Geingob was sworn in as Namibia’s president on March 21, 2015, and was re-elected for another five-year term in 2019. He served as prime minister from 1990-2002 and 2012-2015, in addition to other key ministerial and leadership roles.

“His medical team … has been trying its utmost best to ensure that our President recovers,” Mbumba said in the statement. “Regrettably, notwithstanding the team’s spirited effort to save his life, sadly, fellow Namibians, President Geingob passed on.”

“The Namibian nation has lost a distinguished servant of the people, a liberation struggle icon, the chief architect of our constitution and the pillar of the Namibian house,” the statement noted.

On Jan. 19, the Namibian presidency said Geingob’s medical team discovered cancerous cells following a biopsy examination.