President Thabo Mbeki to attend Inauguration of Namibian President Elect, Windhoek, Namibia, Monday, 21 March 2005

Pretoria - South African President Thabo Mbeki, accompanied by Foreign Minister Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma will attend the inauguration of the President-elect of Namibia, Hifikepunye Pohamba in Windhoek, Namibia on Monday, 21 March 2005.

Hifikepunye Pohamba was elected President of Namibia following successful democratic elections on 15-16 November 2004.

President Mbeki recently hosted outgoing President Sam Nujoma for discussions in Cape Town during his farewell visit to regional leaders to extend his gratitude.

In his message of congratulations to President Pohamba, President Mbeki said, ""I am certain that your election will add impetus to the further consolidation and implementation of the African agenda and NEPAD as part of efforts of the African leadership to push back the frontiers of poverty and under-development."

President Mbeki further expressed his conviction that, "the two countries will continue to strengthen their bilateral political and economic relations whilst discharging their responsibilities towards the African Union and Southern Africa Development Community (SADC)."

South Africa and Namibia share strong bilateral relations with both presidents leading the Heads of State Economic Bilateral Meeting, the focus of which is to promote mutual economic and trade co-operation projects, viz. Spatial Development Initiatives, tourism, energy matters as well as matters related to the South African Customs Union (SACU) and SADC.

In addition, strong links were forged between South Africa and Namibia through the ANC and SWAPO during the fight against apartheid.

Issued by Ronnie Mamoepa on 082 990 4853

Department of Foreign Affairs
Private Bag X152

20 March 2005

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