Namibian President, Hage G. Geingob, eulogize the passing away of Finland President H.E. Martti Ahtisaari.
He described him as a ‘friend of the Namibian liberation struggle’.
Marti Ahtisaari passed away on October 16, 2023.
Below is the full statement published by the Namibian President:
“I have learned with utmost sadness about the passing of the former President of Finland, H.E. Martti Ahtisaari, a friend of the Namibian liberation struggle and a leading peacemaker who played through the United Nations a pivotal role in midwifing the birth of a new Namibia.
The history of Martti Athissari is incomplete without Namibia, a country he was associated with in the many roles that he occupied.
First through his appointment as a senator to the Council of the United Nations Institute for Namibia (UNIN) in 1975, a position which later led to his appointment in 1978 by United Nations Secretary General Kurt Waldheim as the Special Representative of the Secretary General for Namibia.
In 1989, he was appointed by the United Nations Secretary General to assume the difficult task as the leader of the United Nations Transition Assistance Group (UNTAG) in Namibia, which was globally hailed as a model in dealing with complex transitions from conflict to peace.
Major parts in the history of Namibia would be incomplete without the name of former President Ahtisaari. As a Fin, former President Ahtisaari understood fully our quest for freedom and justice. Therefore, in the roles of diplomat, negotiator, peacekeeper and blue helmet, former President Ahtisaari served the Namibian people who were seeking self-determination and justice with flying colors. As an icon in the imagination of the Namibian people, President Ahtisaari was inscribed as an honorary citizen of the Republic of Namibia, with streets and schools having been named after him in remembrance and in celebration of his exceptional deeds in the birth of a free Namibia.
Therefore, today, we are not only mourning the loss of former President Ahtisaari, a friend and one of us, but we are also reaffirming the rich legacy of peace and the outstanding international public service of a Nobel peace laureate with an indelible association with Namibia.
On behalf of the people and the Government of the Republic of Namibia, I wish to extend sincere condolences to the Ahtisaari family and our sister country, Finland.
May His Soul Rest in Peace.”
Hage G. Geingob