President Hage Geingob says only fools fail to change their minds on issues[which they got wrong], even when presented with facts. Speaking at a press conference this week where he defended and gave feedback on his three-week long visit to the United States of America, Geingob also stressed that he is “not for sale” when he was questioned about his travelling and links to business personalities. “Only fools don’t change even after being presented the facts and they continue hitting their heads against a brick wall,” he charged. Since assuming office last year, Geingob has been constantly accused of changing his views too often, announcing a decision one day and retracting it when the public criticizes his decision. A few years back Geingob said the Children of the Liberation Struggle should not be treated differently to other Namibian youth, but days before he jetted out of the country to attend the UN General Assembly last month he ordered for N$11 million to be cleared from the Social Security Development Fund to cater for the training of the group. He also accused the media of continuously deflating the good work done by government despite Namibia being lauded by the international community. “I am not for sale and I am not a commodity I even declared by assets in public,” said an agitated Geingob.
UN mission a success
Meanwhile, Geingob described the UN mission as a huge success. President Hage Geingob said all side engagements that formed part of his recent United States of America (USA) visit will soon breed economic benefits for Namibia. The president addressed the 71st United Nations (UN) General Assembly and attended related activities in the USA from 12 to 28 September this year. “We have scarce resources and we must use every opportunity to market investment opportunities in Namibia and solidify economic relations with our international partners,” said Geingob during a media briefing at State House on Wednesday. The president added that he held fruitful discussions with some Heads of State and attended the Clinton Global Coalition, where he and his delegation managed to put Namibia’s case forward to many wealthy philanthropies for assistance in their areas of interest. He singled out the Namibia Business Forum, which was held as a curtain-raiser event for Government to promote the Namibia Investor Conference to take place on 08 and 09 November this year. “The event was over-subscribed with more than 200 people in attendance as opposed to the initial 100 people for whom provision was made,” he boasted. As a result, Namibia expects a big delegation at the conference, said Geingob.
Among other outstanding features of the US mission was his lectures at the University of Columbia and Harvard University on Constitutional Democracy and the New Africa, respectively. “The mission to the UN General Assembly this year was a huge success. Presidents were allocated 15 minutes for their speeches this year. We were able to connect with our international partners, create new networks and opportunities, and most importantly share the Namibian narrative,” he said. The Head of State is optimistic that their international partners and investors took note of opportunities in Namibia and are now better armed to make informed decisions about Namibia. Geingob explained that it would be of little use for a president to travel thousands of kilometres just to address the UN General Assembly for seven minutes. “Instead of having to undertake many individual trips that are costly, it becomes more cost efficient to meet partners along the sidelines of the annual UN General Assembly in New York. This is a benefit exploited by many from around the world,” he explained.
Additional reporting by Nampa