Nujoma pays tribute to liberation icon

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HEROES' ACRE, 24 June 2017 - Founding Father and Former President Sam Nujoma at the State funeral of the late Andimba Toivo ya Toivo. (Photo by: Francois Lottering ) NAMPA

Staff Reporter

Windhoek-Founding President Sam Nujoma has reiterated that struggle giant Andimba Toivo ya Toivo contributed immensely to Namibia’s liberation struggle and to the consolidation of peace as part of the Swapo-led government.

Ya Toivo died on June 9 at the age of 92. He was buried at the Heroes Acre outside Windhoek on Saturday, on the third tier of the cemetery next to Peter Mweshihange – the country’s first defence minister. Government accorded him a state funeral with full military honours.

Speaking at the memorial service held at the Independence Stadium before the burial in Windhoek, Nujoma said it was therefore commendable that government accorded ya Toivo a hero’s funeral as an acknowledgement of his heroic deeds and sacrifices.

“Although his body ceased to move, his spirit lives on and his name will be entered into the history books as one of the most fearless freedom fighters Namibia has produced,” the former head of state said.

Indeed, he said, even if ya Toivo would be dearly missed by the entire nation and in particular, by his family, sorrow should not subdue us, because his legacy was the peaceful Namibia we saw today.

“The most befitting way to honour his memory is to protect that peace at all cost.”
“Let us therefore continue to celebrate his life and pick up the mantle and the torch where he left off,” he urged fellow Namibians.

“Allow me, therefore, on behalf of the Nujoma family and indeed on my own behalf, to convey our deep-felt sympathies and sincere condolences to the widow, Comrade Vicky ya Toivo, the children, grandchildren and the entire bereaved family and comrades on the loss of Comrade Andimba Toivo ya Toivo.”

Ya Toivo’s contribution to the achievement of Namibian Freedom and genuine Independence would be remembered by the present and future generations of Namibia.

Namibians were bidding farewell to an exceptionally dedicated and principled compatriot and freedom fighter.

Ya Toivo’s statement during the treason trial in Pretoria in 1967 was a great inspiration to the Namibian struggle in defiance of the illegal occupation of Namibia by racist South Africa, Nujoma added.

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