Geingob’s death deals blow to media freedom

By Victor Angula /

As Namibia mourns the death of its president and head of state, the late Dr. Hage G. Geingob, a lot of people are looking at the man he was, his legacy, and the shape of things to come in a Namibia without the towering shadow of his existence.

People are likely to look at his achievements, his unfulfilled promises, and looking for the one thing that his presidency will be remembered for.

While it is still too soon to make statements about him since his body is still lying around somewhere and not yet six feet underground going back to dust from where it came, it however is befitting to pay tribute to him for something that he will surely be missed for.

Geingob made a vow to make sure that press freedom is respected in Namibia for as long as he was President. And surely, just a few months ago Geingob was possibly the first head of state in African history, if not the whole world, to attend a media awards ceremony.

One would have wished that he could still be alive for many years after he stepped out of office, so that his successors could continue in his footsteps as his towering figure cast its shadow over the operations of the media.

Without Geingob, it is likely that the powers at State House may forget about what he stood for, and as a result get to dealing heavy blows on media freedom.

For all the things – good or bad – which Geingob will be remembered for, a President’s commitment to respect and promote media freedom will be one of the things he will be remembered for.

– Victor Angula is the editor of Omutumwa News Online.