By Frederick Philander WINDHOEK Both the President and Founding President of Namibia have in separate press releases paid tribute and homage to the late Coretta Scott-King, wife of the late Dr Martin Luther King, who last week peacefully passed away at the age of 78. “It is with deep shock and profound sadness that I have learnt about the passing away of our sister, Coretta Scott-King on January 31 2006. Coretta Scott-King was known as the ‘First Lady of the Civil Rights Movement’ because of her belief in what she stood for – equal rights of all men and women irrespective of colour. As a mother she was strong and gentle and as a civil rights activist she was upright and steadfast,” said President Hifikepunye Pohamba in his message of condolences. In the President’s opinion Coretta Scott-King forged ahead with the dream of her beloved husband, Dr. Martin Luther King Junior, while raising their four children. “Coretta Scott-King taught us grace and humility. She belonged to us all, who believe in the freedom of humankind. Her determination to make her husband’s dream a reality culminated in the establishment of the Martin Luther King Jr. Centre for Non-Violent Social Change in Atlanta, a symbol for the triumph over racism and injustice,” the President said in the press release from State House. The passing away of Coretta Scott-King is a great loss, not only to her family and the civil rights movement, but also to those who cherish human freedom, social justice and peace. “As we mourn the passing away of yet another giant of the King family, let us celebrate her exemplary life by continuing to carry the torch of freedom and social justice. On behalf of the government of the Republic of Namibia and indeed on my own behalf, we extend our heartfelt sympathies and sincere condolences in this hour of sorrow and bereavement. May her soul rest in eternal peace,” the statement concluded. In a statement from the Sam Nujoma Foundation, the Founding President of the country also expressed his condolences to the late Coretta Scott-King’s family. “The late Coretta Scott-King distinguished herself as an arduous freedom fighter in the Diaspora, one who stood up and confronted racial inequality and discrimination in the American society. Her solid determination inspired millions of freedom fighters and peace lovers throughout the world, including us who were fighting the evil of apartheid-colonialism in Namibia under the banner of SWAPO,” reads the press statement from Nujoma. “She will be remembered by the current and future generations of Africans on the African continent and those in the Diaspora as a dedicated cadre, who fought for the restoration of human dignity, equality and freedom for all in the United States of America. She leaves a legacy of commitment, dedication, perseverance, hard work and love for humanity. This must inspire humanity world wide to work together to ensure a peaceful world without the threat of war as well as social, economic and political prejudice,” the statement to the bereaved King family said.