|The Nujoma Era
Sam Nujoma represents the "South West Africa People's Organisation", SWAPO. Over many years it had been leading a guerilla war against the South African Apartheid regime.
With the Independence of Namibia in the year 1990, Dr. Sam Nujoma became the first President of the Republic of Namibia. He governed the country until 2005 and was - by law - awarded the title "Father of the Nation".
Sam Nujoma was born in 1929 in the village Etunda in the Omusati District as one of ten children. He grew up under humble conditions herding his father's cattle already as a small boy. From 1937 to 1945 he visited the Okahao Finnish Mission School. From there he went to live with his aunt in Walvis Bay. Later he worked for the railways in Windhoek where he also went to evening classes. In 1956 he married Kovambo Theopoldine Katjimune. The Nujomas have three sons and a daughter.
It was during his time in Windhoek that Nujoma's political activities as a labour leader began. In 1959, he was elected as the leader of the Ovambo People's Organisation (OPO) which was to become the South West Africa People's Organisation (SWAPO).
After demonstrations in the township Katutura Nujoma was arrested by the Apartheid regime. Supported by the Herero chief Hosea Kutako, Nujoma went into exile to New York. There he managed the SWAPO team in the UN in 1977 and 1978 and worked on the resolutions, until Namibia eventually gained independence.
BIn the elections in 1994, SWAPO won a comfortable two-thirds majority and Sam Nujoma was confirmed as the State President. Also in the next elections, in 1999, Sam Nujoma was re-elected. To create a legal foundation for a third term, the constitution had to be changed. In 2005 he resigned from office, but remained the leader of the SWAPO party.
Despite all the criticism against Sam Nujoma nobody can dispute his merits in leading the country after independence onto a peaceful, moderate and stable course, which brought the country economic growth and racial reconciliation.
Photo left: Heroes's Acre Monument in honour of the heroes of the Liberation Struggle, above all Sam Nujoma.