Peter, ‘the jungle fighter’ laid to rest

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Helvy Shaanika

Ongwediva – Hundreds of people paid their last respects to late Peter Ekandjo, who was laid to rest at Ongwediva on Saturday. He died on January 8.

Ekandjo was a published author of two books, one of which was a biography that detailed his journey into exile and his days as a liberation fighter in the People’s Liberation Army ofNamibia fighting for freedom from colonial South Africa.

He later worked as a deputy director in the Namibia Central Intelligence Services (NCIS).

President Hage Geingob described Ekandjo as a pillar of strength and a source of inspiration to present and future generations. “He was a tested officer, who was involved in a number of battles inside and outside Namibia. Even though he is no longer with us, he will surely be remembered by the present and the future generations for his contribution to the independence of the Republic of Namibia,” said President Geingob, in a speech read on his behalf by Namibia Central Intelligence Services Director General Phillemon Malima.

Speeches by founding president Dr Sam Nujoma, former president Dr Hifikepunye Pohamba and secretary general of Swapo Nangolo Mbumba were also read during the memorial service.

Born on January 1, 1959 Petrus Norte Kaboy Ekandjo at Omatando village, which now forms part of Ongwediva Town, Ekandjo joined the liberation struggle at the tender age of 16 years. He left the country in 1977 and joined the People Liberation Army of Namibia (PLAN) that same year. As a plan fighter Ekandjo was tasked to carry out underground work forPLAN inside Namibia and secretly organised Swapo activities within the country.

He was captured in 1986 and endured six months of torture by the South African army at Oshakati Army Base. In October 1986, he managed to escape from captivity and went back into exile.

Ekandjo returned home in 1989 with other Namibians that were in exile. Apart from his work in PLAN and NCIS Ekandjo also authored two books, titled ‘The Jungle Fighter’ and ‘The Volunteer Army’. In ‘The Jungle Fighter’, Ekandjo narrated his life as a freedom fighter and the severe physical and psychological torture he endured at the hands of the colonial South African troops.

He is survived by his wife, Maria, his elderly mother, Susana Ndapohoni Mulogeni, four children and his siblings, including Prosecutor General Olivia Imalwa and former councillor of Ongwediva Constituency, Thikameni Ekandjo.

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