Dr. Nangolo Mbumba, the new Namibian President

Dr. Nangolo Mbumba, the new Namibian President

Swearing in of H.E. Dr. Nangolo Mbumba as the New President of the Republic of Namibia, and Appointment and Swearing in of H.E. as the Vice President of the Republic of Namibia Following the sudden passing of the late Dr. Hage Geingob , former President of the Republic of Namibia, on Sunday, 4 February 2024, in terms of Article 29 (4)(a) read together with Article 34 (I) of the Namibian Constitution, H.E. Dr. Nangolo Mbumba was sworn in today, Sunday, 4 February 2024, as the President of the Republic of Namibia.

On the same occasion, H.E. Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah was appointed and sworn in as Vice President of the Republic of Namibia. The Presidency would like to congratulate Dr. Mbumba on his appointment as President of the Republic of Namibia and H.E. Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah on her appointment and swearing in as Vice President of the Republic of Namibia.

Statement by His Excellency Dr Nangolo Mbumba, President of the Republic of Namibia, on the Occasion of the Official Opening of the 9th Session of the 7th Parliament, 6 February 2024, Windhoek

Ladies and Gentlemen, Good Afternoon. I am honoured to join you at the official opening of the 9th Session of the 7th Parliament, in accordance with the longstanding practice established since independence. The assumption of this legislative year is taking place at the time of the loss of our President, H.E Hage Geingob on 4 February. He is one of the Founders of the Namibian Constitution, having chaired the Constituent Assembly which drafted our Constitution. He served, as the First Prime Minister and Third President of our Republic.

Our country has therefore lost a national icon, a Hero, a committed and dedicated leader who did not only contribute to the building of the modern Namibian nation, but has made durable footprints in Namibia, the African continent and globally in all the spheres of human endeavour. May his soul rest in eternal peace. (Let us please observe a minute of silence). As Namibians, we should therefore pick up from where he left and re-dedicate ourselves to the noble ideas of unity and inclusivity for all our citizens in the Namibian House. In his New Year’s message, President Geingob declared this year, 2024 to be the Year of Expectations.

This is also the Year of Elections in which the sovereigns of the Namibian House will go to the polls in November this year, to elect new Presidential and Parliamentary leaders. These new leaders will be expected to continue the tasks of nation building, consolidation of peace, stability and democracy, with the aim of achieving shared prosperity. Honourable Speaker, Honourable Chairperson; Namibians, as the Sovereigns have clear expectations of the leaders they would elect to enter into a Social Contract with, for the next five years. Therefore, both members of the Executive and Parliament should prepare to account to the Sovereigns on their tangible achievements during the past five years of service. As a country, we have made good progress on our socio-economic development, and are facing bright economic prospects.

However, much remains to be done. Therefore, as parliamentarians, you should focus your energies to enact laws that enhance the growth of our national economy, especially the sectors that broaden the scope of economic development in our country, such as mining, agriculture, services and value addition to our natural resources. Currently the Government has embarked on the development of green energy resources as well as oil and gas industries. Thus, all our three organs of State are required to redouble efforts, to realize more inclusive economic growth, equality, equity and shared prosperity across all spheres of our society. Hence, parliamentarians have an important role to play in ensuring that the work of the legislature positively impacts livelihoods, especially for those under-served Namibians in the remote areas of our country.

In this context, just as Members of the Executive arm of Government, members of Parliament are required to self-introspect whether they have executed their mandate of enacting legislation which have positively transformed Namibian lives. I therefore, appeal to all Parliamentarians from both houses to complete all outstanding business, including passing critical bills before Year- end. I understand that the Parliamentary theme for this year is, “Improved public engagement to the expectations of the citizens”. This is particularly fitting and consistent with the overall theme of the Government, which is the “Year of Expectations.”

In view of this, each organ is responsible for different but equally important functions of the State, which are mutually reinforcing, while firmly upholding the doctrine of separation of powers. I have noted with appreciation that over the years, members of Parliament have increased citizenry engagement through various Standing Committees. This is commendable and I am happy to note that the National Assembly has reviewed its Standing Rules and Orders and developed separate rules for the Standing Committees.

I believe that the National Council has similarly reviewed its Standing Rules and Orders, and is equally focused on enhancing outreach programmes. Honourable Speaker, Honourable Chairperson; Members of Parliament play a vital role in ensuring that the laws passed in Parliament respond to the diverse needs and aspirations of our citizens. For that reason, Honourable Members, you should continue to engage with all stakeholders and also consider re- convening the 6th Session of the Children’s Parliament, which was last held in August 2019. The Children’s’ Parliament and Junior National Council served, as platforms where young people gather to debate issues affecting them and make recommendations to relevant Offices, Ministries and Agencies.

These platforms also inculcate leadership values into our young people, which is an investment into the future of our country. Some Honourable members of this august House are alumni of these structures and can testify to the benefits of such exposure. Honourable Speaker, Honourable Chairperson; Last year, several critical Bills were tabled in this house. Some of them were passed, while others remain pending. As you set your Agenda for this year, it is expected that pending Bills be prioritized, as per your mandate.

Therefore, I am pleased to note that the following are among the Bills that are likely to be tabled during the course of the year:

1. Regional Constituency Fund Bill

2. Health Professions Bill

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3. Namibia Energy Regulator Bill

4. Electricity Bill

5. Marriage Bill

6. Child Justice Bill

7. Ombudsman Bill

8. Marriage Bill

9. Divorce Bill

10. Public Gathering and Demonstration Bill

11. Regularization of Status of Certain Residents, their Foreign Spouses and their Descendants Bill

12. Roads Bill and

13. Vehicle Mass Bill

I urge all parliamentarians to ensure that these bills are passed without delay.

In conclusion, as the newly sworn in President, I consider my role to be of an intermediate nature to optimally conclude the term of office of H.E Dr Hage. G. Geingob; to ensure security of our people; to serve all communities to the best of my ability and finally to manage the transition to the next President, whom the Namibian people will elect come November 2024. Let me make it crystal clear, I have no intention, desire or ambition to stand for any office.

With these words, it is now my honour to declare the 9th Session of the 7th Parliament officially opened.

I thank you

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