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Ramaphosa to share stage with Namibian president Geingob

For the first time since the farmgate saga made global headlines, President Cyril Ramaphosa and his Namibian counterpart Hage Geingob will share the same platform. Picture: Facebook

For the first time since the farmgate saga made global headlines, President Cyril Ramaphosa and his Namibian counterpart Hage Geingob will share the same platform. Picture: Facebook

Published Jun 24, 2022

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Cape Town - For the first time since the farmgate saga made global headlines, President Cyril Ramaphosa and his Namibian counterpart Hage Geingob will share the same platform and preside over the signing of a number of bilateral agreements during the third session of the Bi- National Commission (BNC) in Windhoek.

The meeting from June 28 to July 1 comes amid mounting pressure on both presidents to reveal details of the theft of about $4 millions “concealed” in furniture at Ramaphosa’s Phala Phala farm in February 2020 by a gang of Namibian nationals with the assistance of Ramaphosa’s domestic worker.

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The men, including alleged mastermind, Imanuela David, allegedly fled to Namibia where they spent their loot buying properties including guest houses, among other things.

Ramaphosa is alleged to have enlisted Geingob’s services to track the suspects down and brought them back to the country where they were allegedly kidnapped, assaulted and bribed for their silence.

Meanwhile a second Namibia official, sergeant Hendrick Nghede, has been placed on leave for allegedly aiding David to enter Namibia illegally.

Namibian justice ministry spokesperson Simon Idipo told the Cape Times on Thursday that they were still seized with the matter and would issue a statement about the request they sent to the South African side to share information regarding the incident.

While Geingob has distanced himself from the allegations, Ramaphosa has yet to talk about the theft other than confirming that it was reported to his head of security and not the police.

Next week’s session also comes as South Africa and Namibia continue to contradict each other about the existence or a request for this country’s Justice Department to share information with its neighbours about the incident after obtaining a preservation order to have the assets of the suspects kept in government’s possession.

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While Namibia maintains such a request was ignored by South Africa, the local Justice Department has vehemently denied it exists.

Asked whether the two leaders would discuss the scandal, Ramaphosa’s spokesperson Vincent Magwenya would only say: “We will issue an advisory at an appropriate time once the details have been confirmed.”

Namibian Ministry of International Relations and Cooperation (MICRO) executive director, Penda Naanda said the session will review co-operation in a wide range of areas including diplomatic, legal, economic, social, and defence and security.

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The two countries were also expected to consider and sign new bilateral agreements and memorandums of understanding.

“Since the transformation of the Heads of State Economic Forum into the BNC in November 2012, the BNC, co-chaired by the presidents of Namibia and South Africa, has provided an impetus to further enhance bilateral co-operation, as well as a platform to exchange views on issues of mutual interest and concern at the regional and multilateral forums,” said Naanda.

The Namibia – South Africa Bi-National Commission will commence with a senior officials session, co-chaired by Naanda and director-general in the Department of International Relations and Co-operation Zane Dangor.

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The ministerial session will be chaired by Namibian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of International Relations and Co-operation Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, and co-chaired by South African Minister of International Relations and Co-operation Naledi Pandor.

Cape Times

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