9th Street renamed

Rudi Bowe

The Council of the Municipality of Walvis Bay has renamed 9th Street in the harbour town to Johnson Fwafwa Mabakeng Street to honour the late Johnson Mabakeng a former Deputy Commissioner in the Namibian Correctional Service who died at the age of 45 in July 2006.

The late Deputy Commissioner Johnson Fwafwa Mabakeng was a passionate correctional officer by profession and to some extent by nature. A career associated with a high level of discipline and lived a memorable and successful career.
His calling started at a youthful age of 21, when he joined the pre-independence Prison Service on the 1st July 1982 as Assistant Warder. Due to his hard work, vibrant and energetic personality, he rose through the ranks and in 1991 he was promoted to the rank of Captain to be the first Black Head of Prison of the Windhoek Correctional Facility.
Due to his strong character and in view of the sensitive assignment related to the transition of Walvis Bay to become part of Namibia, he was identified to be the most suitable officer to oversee the handing and taking over of the Walvis Bay Facility.
He perfectly executed the process in a short period of time and was thus promoted to the rank of Senior Superintendent. This assignment was aimed at reintegrating the Facility to con-form to the standards of the new Government. His efforts were recognised and he was promoted to the rank of Senior Superintendent on the 1st September 1994.
The Late Mabakeng was appointed to the rank of Deputy Commissioner of the Namibian Correctional Service in March 1996, the rank he held until his untimely demise at the age of 45 on 30 July 2006.
The Commissioner-General of the Namibian Correctional Service Raphael Tuhafeni Hamunyela said at the renaming event “As a disciplinarian, coupled with his straight forwardness, the late Mabakeng did not tolerate ill-discipline regardless of his relationship with an individual. He was unifier who encouraged teamwork and respect among officers”.
Hamunyela also mentioned that the late Mabakeng was instrumental in fighting for the recognition of the Namibian Correctional Service to be at par with other law enforcement agencies such as the Namibian Defense Force, Namibian Police Force.
“The late Mabakeng was a true son of the soil who served this country at the best of his ability through the Namibian Correctional Service and this is evidenced with the recognition bestowed upon him by the Municipal Council of Walvis Bay. He laid the foundations on which the Namibian Correctional Service is built on and his legacy will continue to inspire us” Hamunyela added.
Councillor Penelope Martin the Deputy Mayor of Walvis Bay said on behalf of his Worship Councillor Alderman Immanuel Wilfred the Mayor of Walvis Bay that “A name plays an important part of one’s life and we do not depend on our names to form the basis of our personality.
Councillor Martin also mentioned that a street naming ceremony takes place for various reasons including to reflect a changing time or to honour individuals who have made a significant contribution to the country.
She added that the late Mabakeng was a hero to many and what sets him apart was his impeccable and excellent work ethic.
The eldest son of the late Mabakeng Mr Mukela Mabakeng said on behalf of the Mabakeng family that “We would liketo express my pro-found gratitude and ap-preciation to the Muni-cipal Council of Walvis Bay and its residents for this gesture and call on other towns to emulate this. This street will edu-cate our children to emulate the good leader-ship and character of our father Johnson Fwafwa Mabakeng which is re-quired by our future generation to carry this nation to greater heights.

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