Namibia Day


Pakistan - stamp Namibia Day 1974In 1973 the General Assembly adopted a resolution by which it decided to commemorate 26 August each year as Namibia Day. It was on this day that the South West Africa People's Organisation (SWAPO) decided to take up the struggle for the independence of the former German colony and League of Nations Mandate Territory.


Before the Second World War the Union of South Africa was the administrative authority on behalf of the League of Nations. However after the war South Africa refused to transfer administration to the UN Trusteeship Council. After the International Court of Justice ruled in 1960 that it had no power to render a decision on the legitimacy of South African rule, the General Assembly by resolution 2145 (XXI) of 27 October 1966 terminated the mandate of the Republic of South Africa over South West Africa and assumed direct responsibility  for the administration of the territory until its independence.


African Liberation Monument, Georgetown, GuyanaAfter South Africa rejected various Security Council resolutions to withdraw from Namibia, the General Assembly by resolution 3111 (XXVIII) designated the UN Council for Namibia as the legal authority for Namibia. The former Irish foreign minister Sean MacBride was appointed Commissioner for Namibia.


Observance of Namibia Day went on until the independence was reached in 1990. After that 26 August became Heroes' Day, a national remembrance day in Namibia.


On Namibia Day 1974 the president of Guyana, Forbes Burnham, unveiled the African Liberation Monument in the capital Georgetown. This monument was erected in memory "of all those who have struggled and continue to struggle for the freedom of Human Bondage". The monument consists of five polished greenheart logs encased in a jasper stand on a granite boulder. The varying heights of the logs are representative of the different ages of those who lost their lives; the slab of granite represents the strength of the freedom movement and the pebbles around the base of the monument represent the millions of peoples who are involved in the fight of human bondage.



Stamp catalogue - 1983


Union of Soviet Socialist Republics       26 August 1983









Up - Home



last revised: 5 July 2009