WINDHOEK: Mourners from all walks of life flocked to the Hosianna Evangelical Lutheran Church in Katutura on Thursday to pay their last respects to freedom fighter, the late Retired Colonel Hamwandi Epafras Shilombuelua.
Among the mourners were Cabinet Ministers, high-ranking Government officials, members from the business community, spiritual leaders, community leaders and individuals.
Retired Colonel Shilombuelua passed away on his farm in Omaruru on 23 September 2012.
He was 67.
In his message of condolences read on his behalf by his Special Advisor on Political Affairs, Kanana Hishoono, President Hifikepunye Pohamba described the late Shilombuelua as an unshakable staunch, fearless and dedicated freedom fighter.
“The late Colonel (Rtd) Shilombuelua joined Swapo at a young age. As a committed Swapo cadre, he was actively involved in the mobilisation of the Namibian people, especially the youth, with the aim to fight against the illegal occupation of Namibia by the apartheid colonial regime of South Africa,” said Pohamba.
The president said Shilombuelua’s death is certainly being felt, not only by his family, but also by all People’s Liberation Army of Namibia (PLAN) combatants, members of the Namibian Defence Force and the entire people of Namibia.
Swapo’s Deputy Secretary-General, Nangolo Mbumba, said in a message read by Deputy Minister of Labour and Social welfare Alpheus Muheua, the late colonel was a commander who served in different capacities, and went through life with vigor, determination, commitment, and as a fearless freedom fighter and a brave “son of the soil”.
Mbumba said the late Shilombuelua was amongst those African patriots who sacrificed their youth, and dedicated their entire lives to the liberation of their motherlands.
“We pray that the bereaved family, friends and comrades find comfort and consolation in the goodness of the memories about his life and footprints he has left in your lives, in particular his sons and daughters. His footsteps are left for others to follow until the realisation of our Vision 2030 and beyond,” Mbumba said.
He said that through the bravery and heroism of the late Shilombuelua, many generations of Namibians now cherish and will bear the torch of freedom and independence for centuries.
Shilombuelua worked as operations manager at the Swapo-owned Namib Contract Haulage (NCH) company at the time of his death.
He is survived by his wife Helvi Ndesheetelwa Shilomuelua well known as “One Day”, and an unspecified number of children.
Shilombuelua will be buried on Saturday at his home village of Oshinyadila in the Oshana Region.