Windhoek-President Hage Geingob has requested the former president of the United States of America, George .W. Bush, to promote Namibia in the USA, the world’s largest economy.
Speaking at a gala dinner held in honour of Bush and his wife, Laura, at State House on Wednesday evening, Geingob reminded his audience that Namibia is a child of international solidarity, midwifed by the United Nations and a friend to all… “unless they declare themselves our enemy”.
Bush and his wife arrived in the country on Wednesday and met with government officials, including Minister of Health Dr Bernard Haufiku, First Lady Monica Geingos and former first lady Penehupifo Pohamba.
“I don’t know whether I can assign or task you formally, but when you go back from here, talk about Namibia. Tell the Americans what you have seen here,” Geingob enthused.
“We are building a country, building a new nation, I compare that to building a house where we are using our different bricks to build the Namibian house, a house in which we must make sure that no one is left out. Tell them about this house,” he said.
“Tell them about this nation, a very young nation and come back again, because Namibia wants to have you here. Namibians will be welcoming you again,” he added.
“The Namibian people are happy to have you here with your dear wife and a big delegation. We met some of them while we were in America and they might have given you a lift, but I am glad that you are here, “he joked.
On his part, Bush thanked Geingob for the honour, saying it was very rare that a former president gets a dinner in their honour. “So, Mr President and the First Lady, thank you from the bottom of our hearts for hosting us.”
Bush jokingly said he feels quite comfortable in Windhoek, because it looks a lot like Texas.
The dinner was attended by several parliamentarians, including the leader of the opposition, DTA president McHenry Venaani, prominent business people and diplomats.
Bush, who left the country yesterday, was the initiator of the PEPFAR programme that aims to assist Africans in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
Namibia received over N$28 billion worth of PEPFAR funding since the programme was launched in the country in 2004, making it one of the largest external contributions to Namibia.
Bush served as U.S. president between 2001 and 2009.