President Cyril Ramaphosa has paid tribute to late Namibian leader Hage Geingob after he died in hospital.
He described him as a towering figure in the liberation struggle in Namibia.
Ramaphosa said he was hosted by Geingob in Windhoek in October when he was on a working visit.
He said during his visit, they committed to continue to strengthen relations between the two countries.
He said he was saddened by the death of Geingob and this was a blow to the people of Namibia and the continent of Africa.
The government of Namibia earlier announced that Geingob was admitted to hospital for a cancer treatment.
Early on Sunday it said he had died and doctors had done their best to save his life.
Ramaphosa said this was a loss for the nation and the continent.
He joined Geingob a few months ago in Windhoek where they discussed a number of issues affecting the two neighbours.
But they committed themselves to improve their relations.
“I am deeply saddened at this time as I reflect on the privilege I had as recently as October 2023 to be hosted by president Geingob, madame Geingos and the Cabinet on a working visit to Namibia.
“During my visit we committed our two countries to even closer partnership, inspired in great measure by Geingob’s passionate conviction about our shared future as nations and greater opportunities and prosperity for citizens on both sides of the Orange River.
“Geingob was a towering veteran of Namibia’s liberation from colonialism and apartheid. He was also greatly influential in the solidarity that the people of Namibia extended to the people of South Africa so that we could be free today,” said Ramaphosa.
The government of Namibia was set to meet to make arrangements for the funeral.
Geingob died at the age of 82.