Pranab Mukherjee addresses Joint Session Parliament of Namibia

Written by: Lisa Jani
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Addressing the Joint Session Parliament of Namibia today, President Pranab Mukherjee, who is first Indian Head of State to visit the country since 1995, said India would also be happy to partner with Namibia in the implementation of "Vision 2030" through inclusive development and capacity building.

India today offered "any assistance" that Namibia may require in improving its socio-economic objectives enshrined in "Harambee Prosperity Plan" floated by its present government.

Pranab Mukherjee

"Both our nations seek to address complex governance issues in our own ways. But it will be through empowerment of the disempowered - and by ensuring that in the 'Harambee house', no section is excluded, that we will succeed," he said.

Recalling strong ties between Namibia and India, Mukherjee said his visit takes place at a time of excellent bilateral relations between the two countries.

"India believed that her own independence was incomplete so long as her brethren in Africa continued to suffer oppression by foreign masters. India was proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with the leaders and people of Namibia in their liberation struggle," he said.

Mukherjee said India-Namibia relationship has been built on the firm foundation of mutual trust and understanding.

"Our two nations are bound by our common experience of colonial rule and the struggle of our people for freedom," he said.

The President said the first-ever SWAPO (South-West Africa People's Organisation) Embassy abroad was established in New Delhi in 1986 and it was this move by India that started the chain of diplomatic recognition by other countries and the inevitability of Namibia's independence.

"We appreciate the vision of President (Hage) Geingob in introducing the 'Harambee Prosperity Plan'.

India stands ready to extend any assistance that Namibia may require for achieving the 'Harambee Prosperity Plan's socio-economic objectives. India would also be happy to partner with Namibia in the implementation of 'Vision 2030' through inclusive development and capacity building," he said.

The President said founding President and Father of the Namibian Nation, Sam Nujoma, and a respected Leader of the SWAPO Party is greatly admired in India as a world leader and friend of the Indians "India had conferred upon him the prestigious Indira Gandhi Peace Prize for Disarmament and Development for the year 1990 in recognition of his outstanding contribution in leading the people of Namibia to freedom," he said. 

With PTI inputs

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