Ben Amathila

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The Honorable
Ben Amathila
Minister of Information and Broadcasting
In office
President Sam Nujoma
Minister of Trade and Industry
In office
21 March 1990 – 1993
President Sam Nujoma
Preceded by position established
Personal details
Born (1938-10-01) 1 October 1938 (age 78)
Walvis Bay, Erongo Region
Nationality Namibian
Political party SWAPO
Spouse(s) Libertina Amathila
Occupation Politician

Ben Amathila (born 1 October 1938 in Walvis Bay[1]) is a semi-retired Namibian politician. Amathila served in the government of Namibia with SWAPO from independence in 1990 until his retirement from the National Assembly in April 2007. From 1990 to 1993, he served as Minister of Trade and Industry then, after resisting the change, became the Minister of Information and Broadcasting (1993–2000). In 2000, President Sam Nujoma dismissed him from his Cabinet post. He retained his seat in the Assembly until his resignation in 2007, citing concerns with his party. He is still a member of SWAPO's Politburo. Internationally, Amathila is a member of the Pan-African Parliament.[2]

Amathila was re-elected to the SWAPO Central Committee at the party's August 2002 congress, placing eighth with 369 votes,[3] and he was again elected to the Central Committee at SWAPO's November 2007 congress.[4]

Namibian War of Independence[edit]

Amathila began working towards Namibian independence in 1959 with the forerunner to SWAPO, the Ovamboland People's Organization. He helped mobilizing support for SWAPO from 1959 until going into exile in 1966. He then was instrumental in organizing SWAPO's consultative congress at Tanga, Tanzania in 1969. Shortly afterwards, Amathila became SWAPO's representative in Scandinavia then the movement's Secretary for Economics in Lusaka than Luanda.


Amathila is the owner of a farm near Omaruru, where he plans to spend his retirement. He is married to the first Black Namibian female physician and fellow politician, Libertina Amathila. Amathila was educated in Okahandja then Tsumeb.


  1. ^ Page at Namibian Parliament website[permanent dead link].
  2. ^ Hopwood, Graham (2007). "Who's Who, entry for Ben Amathila". Guide to Namibian Politics. Namibia Institute for Democracy. Archived from the original on 11 June 2011. Retrieved 24 May 2013. 
  3. ^ "The ruling party's new Central Committee", The Namibian, August 27, 2002.
  4. ^ Christof Maletsky, "Swapo big names dropped", The Namibian, December 3, 2007.